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Will New Technology Replace Jobs and Result in Greater Economic Freedom?

In the history of technology, emerging technologies are contemporary advances and innovation in various fields of technology. Various converging technologies have emerged in the technological convergence of different systems evolving towards similar goals. Convergence can refer to previously separate technologies such as voice (and telephony features), data (and productivity applications) and video that now share resources and interact with each other, creating new efficiencies.

Emerging technologies are those technical innovations which represent progressive developments within a field for competitive advantage; converging technologies represent previously distinct fields which are in some way moving towards stronger inter-connection and similar goals. However, the opinion on the degree of impact, status and economic viability of several emerging and converging technologies vary.

Many writers, including computer scientist Bill Joy, have identified clusters of technologies that they consider critical to humanity’s future. Joy warns that the technology could be used by elites for good or evil. They could use it as “good shepherds” for the rest of humanity, or decide everyone else is superfluous and push for mass extinction of those made unnecessary by technology. Advocates of the benefits of technological change typically see emerging and converging technologies as offering hope for the betterment of the human condition. However, critics of the risks of technological change, and even some advocates such as transhumanist philosopher Nick Bostrom, warn that some of these technologies could pose dangers, perhaps even contribute to the extinction of humanity itself; i.e., some of them could involve existential risks.

Much ethical debate centers on issues of distributive justice in allocating access to beneficial forms of technology. Some thinkers, such as environmental ethicist Bill McKibben, oppose the continuing development of advanced technology partly out of fear that its benefits will be distributed unequally in ways that could worsen the plight of the poor. By contrast, inventor Ray Kurzweil is among techno-utopians who believe that emerging and converging technologies could and will eliminate poverty and abolish suffering.

Some analysts such as Martin Ford, author of The Lights in the Tunnel: Automation, Accelerating Technology and the Economy of the Future, argue that as information technology advances, robots and other forms of automation will ultimately result in significant unemployment as machines and software begin to match and exceed the capability of workers to perform most routine jobs.

As robotics and artificial intelligence develop further, even many skilled jobs may be threatened. Technologies such as machine learning may ultimately allow computers to do many knowledge-based jobs that require significant education. This may result in substantial unemployment at all skill levels, stagnant or falling wages for most workers, and increased concentration of income and wealth as the owners of capital capture an ever larger fraction of the economy. This in turn could lead to depressed consumer spending and economic growth as the bulk of the population lacks sufficient discretionary income to purchase the products and services produced by the economy.


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  1. Tax the businesses through the roof. Drive them out of the country and confiscate the factories and sell it to the workers as a cooperative.
    The solution is easy. If the capitalists resist taxation we the people can just agree not to pay any bills for a matter of 2-3 months, take our money out of the banks and take the entire system down. We the people have the power. Not the oligarchs. Once the people awake and pull back the curtain they will see who really has the power. The power is in us when we unite. Therefore the oligarchs will do all they can to keep us divided. If we can see through that game and call them on it we will overcome.

  2. We will have Socialism or a Neo-feudal form of fascism. The choice is ours…

  3. Technology should be perceived and used as an instrument to give the human-kinder FREEDOM… The current government should now focus on developing policies to re-organise the economy, because a economy of machine is far different from the economy of human-power.
    Because the realities are that theres now way that Economy will ever create enough jobs to absorb all people who have a minimum of Bachelor degree…

  4. in the future the means of production will be distributed at an individual level, 3d printing.

  5. I agree with frbe0101. Even after we finally pull out of the current recession, we may never have the level of employment we once had. New jobs being created invariably require greater training, aptitude and intelligence than the ones that were eliminated. And what do we do as computers become more and more human like in their thinking ability? Already, IBM's Watson is being readied to do analysis that once required human doctors.

  6. Oh by the way computer software engineer is 0.74% of the employment market, and all the newest jobs created are even smaller, they will have to within the next few decades replace most of the classic jobs listed above. Do you think most people have the intelligence and aptitude to do these new kinds of jobs? Do you think there are even going to be enough positions for these jobs? Human population growth is slowing and economic growth can't grow for very much longer.

  7. Truck and sales drivers are the most common job in america (2.61% of all employment) in fact of all the most common jobs you have to get down to 34th in the list "computer software engineer" to find one that was actually created in the last 50 years! Cashiers 2.24% threaten by auto-checkout, Retail sales workers 2.36% losing to internet purchasing, truck drivers will be threaten by automated vehicles. Automation is today replacing jobs faster then new ones are being created.

  8. I agree with fullfist – now we have the Chinese making computers for everybody – in China – not in the U.S. Americans are being made fat by convenience of the technology and loss of jobs.

  9. Currently, automation only benefits the upper classes under a labor-for-money paradigm. The cost savings using automation isn't passed on to the consumer. It is used as profit for the corporation/stockholders. Take away the monetary system and everyone benefits.

  10. People at the top shouldn't be greedy. But they are. Neoliberalism sucks.

  11. will or without?

  12. Newspapers are going out of business, customer service is non existent. What are we doing?

  13. Every area is affected: Tellers, Cashiers, Insurance Agents,

  14. Who will buy if no human is working? Greed will destroy this society, under the pretext of advancement.

  15. profit and technological advancement don't mix

  16. People should be happy that technology is freeing them.We will need a resource-based economy for this new era.This will eventually happen because it is part of evolution.
    watch zeitgeist moving forward.

  17. sure, but the exponential rate at which it is happening and will happen in the next 30 years is like a bus out of control, we may be traveling to a happy place but i doesn't mean we cant' crash
    if it reaches a point at which we cant keep, unemployment will explode and people will hit the streets unless the economic model changes
    in the future those with the means of production (machinery) have the power.

  18. yes

  19. Technology will always take away old jobs and add new ones. Ever heard of vinyl records? it was huge. Ever heard of typewriters? huge. technology comes and goes and replaces itself, those who learn to change and adapt quickly to rapid change will be the most successful. The cycle will continue. More jobs will be automated or disappear entirely and new technology will create new jobs. boom.

  20. well it could be true who knows

  21. This satan work to kill human

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