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Old 12-06-2012, 03:14 AM
Danny B Danny B is online now
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Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: L.A. Ca.
Posts: 4,851
Robots and automation

I'm writing these posts in pieces to try to organize my thoughts. This post is on automation.

Here is an article talking about he future of manufacturing.
New Wave of Deft Robots Is Changing Global Industry -

Another good article;
How Technology Is Eliminating Higher-Skill Jobs : NPR

Even the Chinese are buying robots;
Chinese Company Continues Plan To Replace Workforce With 500,000 Robots | Singularity Hub

Robots do jobs beyond the dexterity of humans;
Robot Domination – Look At The Making of a Memory Card | Singularity Hub

ABB’s Super Fast Industrial Robots Impress [Videos] | Singularity Hub

Surgery robots can peel a grape. Robots can play a violin. Football robots play soccer. On and on.

Losing manufacturing jobs?
Robert B. Reich

America has been losing manufacturing jobs to China, Latin
America and
the rest of the developing world. Right?

Well, not quite.

It turns out that manufacturing jobs have been disappearing all over
the world. Economists at Alliance Capital Management in New York took
a close look at employment trends in 20 large economies recently, and
found that since 1995 more than 22 million factory jobs have

In fact, the United States has not even been the biggest loser.
Between 1995 and 2002, we lost about 11 percent of our manufacturing
jobs. But over the same period, the Japanese lost 16 percent of
theirs. And get this: Many developing nations are losing factory jobs.
During those same years, Brazil suffered a 20 percent decline.

Here's the real surprise. China saw a 15 percent drop. China, which is
fast becoming the manufacturing capital of the world, has been losing
millions of factory jobs.

What's going on?

In two words: Higher productivity. All over the world, factories
becoming more efficient. They've installed new equipment and utilized
new technology. And that often means fewer jobs.

Market reforms have also played a role. In China, new modern factories
are replacing large, inefficient state-run plants. The result is that
even as China produces more goods than ever before, millions of
factory workers have been laid off.

Manufacturing is following the same path as agriculture. As
productivity rises, employment falls because fewer people are needed.

In 1910, almost a third of adult Americans worked on farms. Now, fewer
than 3 percent do. But American agriculture is the most productive in
the world.

Similarly, global manufacturing output is rising-since the mid-'90s,
up 30 percent-even as worldwide manufacturing employment has been
dropping. The two trends are directly related.

So next time you hear a politician complain that American
manufacturing jobs are fleeing to low-cost countries like China or to
Latin America, watch your wallet. Everyone's losing factory jobs.

"”We’re entering unknown territory in the quest to reduce labor costs. The AI revolution is doing to white collar jobs what robotics did to blue collar jobs"
Race Against The Machine

The Industrial Revolution started out gradually at the bottom of the "ability ladder". First, it displaced draft animals. Then, it displaced stevedores
and others who did heavy manual labor. The industrial revolution NEVER stopped climbing the ability ladder. Mass production displaced artisans.
Over the decades, more and more job niches fell by the wayside.

The abbacus had always been there with simple machine logic. Then came the Babbage machine.
The Babbage Engine | Computer History Museum
Simple machine logic gradually improved. Then came the computer and CNC machines. Next, was robotics.

Pure free-market capitalism is pure competition. Competition demands efficiency. It is an inexorable march. As resources become harder to find, they are used more carefully and sparingly.
We are on an unstoppable march to efficiency. The search for free energy is just another quest for efficiency.

All productivity is done with an eye towards improving efficiency. All productivity is done with capital and true capital is limited.
Since capital is used up in productivity, it must be replaced. This is the source of greed,,, insufficient capital.

The industrial revolution will continue to work it's way up the ability ladder.
computers will get smarter ( Moore's law). There is even a claim that robots will follow Moore's law. Kurzweil will tell you all about it.
Kurzweil Accelerating Intelligence
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