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View Diary: Open thread for night owls: The end of labor—protecting workers from robots (140 comments)

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  •  There is no economic incentive to develop robots (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    to do unskilled human manual labor, because human manual labor is dirt cheap.

    •  Tell that to Zappos. (4+ / 0-)

      Wired had a great article in 2009 about the automation of retail warehouses. The robots follow bar codes along the floor until they get to the right shelving unit, which they then pick up and bring to the human who stands in one place, picking stuff off the shelves as they come to them.

      The first advantage is speed, which includes the ability to move entire shelves for faster access as different items become popular. The second, obviously, is no need for meal breaks, HR or scheduling. And the last is the elimination of all the equipment humans need. Everything from locker rooms to lighting, ventilation, bathrooms, parking lots and water fountains can be eliminated if you turn the place over to bots.

      Underlying it all is simplification of life for ownership. Less to think about, less to worry about going wrong, fewer humans to bug you with demands.

      "The Democratic Party is not our friend: it is the only party we can negotiate with."

      by 2020adam on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 12:46:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  to a certain extent I agree (0+ / 0-)

      the problem is that companies HATE employees.

      they have to manage them, and provide benefits and compete for them (sometimes).

      overal they are a pain in the neck.  a company would love to replace you with a robot.

      but generally, people are really cheap.

      big badda boom : GRB 090423

      by squarewheel on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 01:35:01 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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