ITGS Syllabus

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Topic 164

Social and economic effects of replacing people with robots in the workplace by Aditiya

Social and economic impact of replacing humans with robots in the workplace

Issues:
1. Leaving humans out of a job and hence leaving them out of the capacity to earn and live a life of at least a moderate level luxury which is a right as indicated by the UN Human Rights Commission
2. Trustworthiness of a robot
3. Efficiency and ability of a robot to do the same work, especially the creative aspect
4. Impossibility of completely displacing humans from the workplace
5. Negative effect on humans(like laziness) apart from just throwing them out of a job
6. Lack of the ability of a robot to think rationally and logically. This is not the same thing as algorithmically because computer programs are essentially algorithms.

Emergence of technology:
The first robot ever is by many considered to be the tele-operated boat invented by Nikola Tesla in 1898. The first humanoid robot named Elektro was built in the 1930s. The first autonomous robots were created by a scientist at Bristol University in 1948. Today, robots have evolved into robots like the ASIMO which is made by Honda. The ASIMO’s features are as listed below:
1. Recognition of moving objects
2. Recognition of postures and gestures
3. Environment recognition
4. Distinguishing sounds
5. Facial sounds

A robot that is in an MIT lab can distinguish tones from one another, recognize emotion and respond with a reply appropriate.

Stakeholders and their pros and cons:
People- The advent of robots and the replacement of humans in the workplace see humans at both an advantage and a disadvantage. This means the burden is shifted of humans and onto insensitive, untiring objects. Also, with this comes the unfortunate consequence that humans become lazy beings with nothing to do and also they won’t be able to earn money to feed their families and live a fairly luxurious life. Also, they need robots to be creative for businesses to run. Also, they are at risk. A young factory worker was killed in Japan in 1981. The cause was likely the lack of the ability of a robot to think rationally. Also a probability was that the robot malfunctioned, wasn’t able to sense the man’s presence, and it’s hydraulic arm, working unrelentingly, pushed the worker into a grinding machine. Also, it leaves many people out of jobs and it is practically impossible for a robot, due to the fact that it’s impossible for it to think rationally and creatively, to function as the upper echelons of administration.
Robot companies- Companies which manufacture robots stand to make money if the use of more and more robots is advocated in workplaces. But, on the flipside, in the present times and in the near future, it’ll probably be difficult to manufacture single units of robot, let alone mass produce them. Thus, companies can also incur monumental costs by way of manufacturing robots.

Solutions:
The easiest solution is to employ a balanced workforce(balanced in that creative jobs are executed by humans and screwing of things, etc. is done by robots) of robots and humans and ensuring a job for displaced humans.

Areas of Impact:
It impacts economics and business and also simply the ethics of displacing humans from their work and substitute them with insensitive objects. I have explained how earlier in this essay.

This situation is more of an issue in developed countries with a high income per capita in which it’ll be hard and all the more immoral do displace an individual from his lucrative job. Despite this being said, even heavily populated countries can suffer with tones and tones of people. Despite many people being unqualified, they can still be trained to do the mechanized jobs which are most likely the jobs which a robot will do. Thus, introduction of robots into the workforce can face lots of criticism and protest.


or

Social and economic effects of replacing people with robots in the workplace by Akira Jackson

First of all is it possible for robots to replace humans in the workplace? I say it is quite possible because there are already some jobs that got occupied by robots. For example at factories they use robots instead of people to assemble the products. It is certainly efficient to have machines doing the work but t would be bad socially because people would lose jobs.

One issue associated with this subject is unemployment. This is because the robots will take over the jobs that people can perform. To the employers the machines will be much more efficient than hiring people because they don’t need to pay the machines every month. Also another issue is trust because the employees would not be able to trust the employer. This is mainly because at any given time they can be replaced by machines and get fired.

Some solutions that can overcome this problem are to keep the machines job to simple tasks that are tedious and no one wants. In this case people would not be threatened to lose their jobs and they would not have to do jobs that they hate. Another way is to create new jobs so the people can get jobs even if they get fired because of machines. For example they can take jobs to make parts for the machines or jobs to assemble the parts of the machines or they can just take jobs that machines can’t perform, such as creative jobs like design.

Replacing humans with machines are unethical. This is mainly because taking away jobs from decent people to simply increase efficiency is wrong. Another ethical issue is the humiliation that the people get when they are fired knowing that machines replaced them. This can be really degrading because it is like someone telling you that machines are better than you at the job.

In this subject I think the market system itself is responsible. This is mainly because the world seems to value efficiency more than giving people jobs. That is why they replace people with machines to increase efficiency and to get more profit. Also another fact that is responsible is the people, who invented robots to do peoples jobs, although they did it for the benefit of others they are still the bases of the problem.

A possible alternative decision is to limit the number of robots that can be installed in a facility. This would reserve some jobs for the people and they would not have to be completely replaced. Also they can create new jobs so even if they get replaced they can get new jobs instead.


By limiting the number of robots that can be installed in a facility the economy would be less efficient and they would not be able to produce as much goods as before. So they might be economically worse off compared to other countries. Creating new jobs would possibly decrease the wage that is paid because the money would be distributed more widely.


If we replace people with robots it would be certainly be more efficient but for the people it is bad news because they would lose jobs. But by developing more creative jobs that robots cant perform we can insure that people get paid Also robots can have flaws so it is not smart to totally trust robots thinking they can perform anything. Replacing people with robots certainly has both positive and negative aspects that we need to consider.

3 Comments:

Blogger aditya kumar said...

aditya is doing topic 164....i think i posted somewhere else as well but not sure....the topic is ""social and economic effects of replacing people with robots in the workplace"" ......i am ADITYA KUMAR

January 09, 2007 9:53 AM  
Blogger akirajackson said...

no aditya I took the topic first and I wrote on the topic sheet and your name wasnt on it when i did so.

February 12, 2007 12:46 AM  
Blogger tejvir said...

Do you think data available on this blogspot is enough to teach students ITGS?

July 22, 2010 11:48 AM  

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