Most everyone thinks about robots taking our jobs as a bad thing. How will people earn a living?
But perhaps it’s not a bad thing. Robots taking our jobs could completely reinvent what it means to work and earn a living.
Wouldn’t it be great if everyone had machines do their farming, manufacturing, cooking, cleaning etc.? We could still do these things ourselves of course but only when we chose to.
Wouldn’t it be great if we didn’t have to work to put food on the table or a roof over our heads, because robots powered by renewable energy would either directly do those things for us, or make it so cheap that the costs were negligible.
Of course the short-term dislocation of millions of people (displaced by robots) is no small matter to deal with but we seem to only be focussed on that dislocation and not on what could be on the other side: A world where human beings did not have to worry about earning a living, and instead did new forms of work that uplifted the human spirit, and unleashed human potential.
The danger is that we don’t steer this artificial intelligence and robotic development into unleashing human potential and instead continue to focus on increasing profits and military advantage. Continuing on this path will make the coming dislocation harder than it needs to be.
Something to think about especially if you have kids.