I’m one of those people who likes the internet. Who loves that most, if not all information in the world, is mostly just one mouseclick away.
If your battery is not dead, ofcourse.
In general, I’m a big lover of the digital world. Given that I have my issues, being unemployed is one of ‘m, the net just has a lot to offer.
However, I do have my boundaries. I still prefer my books to be in paper shape, because I like to be able to turn pages back or forward, in search of that one paragraph I like so much, to read parts over and over again, while I still have my finger on the page where I was actually reading from. Besides that, call me crazy, I just love the smell of paper in my hands. I’ll grand you that reading a John Irving novel, a Dan Brown quickie or a Jung Chang biography isn’t all that practical in shape when going on a holiday, but there you have it.
I like big books and I cannot lie!
But that’s not all I’m talking about.
This is really to draw the picture. As this blog is called ‘Robotisation in a crise’, I can’t just stick with books, of course. What concerns me is the ease in which it happens.
Step by step.
Some time ago drones were introduced to deliver packages. Nice and all, but robots are robots, not people. The numerous counts of people I’ve seen either tweeting or ‘facebooking’ pictures of these drones delivering packages on a roof, a shed, in a fountain or god knows where, are numerous.
Yes, I’m aware that post offices don’t have half as much employees to do this human work as it was supposed to be. Robots have proven not to be capable of deviding ‘wrong’ from ‘right’. It is this why I fear these bloody mechanical bastards. Codes they can decypher, yes, but honest ‘wrong’ from ‘right’? No. That’s why so many mistakes are made. And why it fears me so much to see, again, the ease to which humans praise the ‘goodness’ of the robots. Who not only, apparently, do the jobs of humans (hello, there’s a crise, these humans they’re replacing have families to support, you know?!) , but also do it better and at a lower cost. A human being will at least show emotions or try to fix a mistake. Robots just blame humans. The other way around also happens regularly, but I’m not about to point fingers.
I recently saw a devestating record of at least 20 articles about robots replacing all kinds of human works. A camper of sorts that can make things inside to be delivered to the person who came up with that idea (whatever it is) at his/her house.
I hope there’s rules attached to this, as it’s been proven before it’s rather easy to print a full automatic weapon with such a printer and just simply put it together. You think a robot would refuse a minor? I don’t. I hear you think ‘you can put a special lock on devices to make sure that never happens’. As I said, it’s a robot you’re giving that order. A robot only does codes, no matter how ‘human’ you make it. It doesn’t feel. It knows. And as it could be fed false info (children or any individual have been known to do that: give false info) it could be giving, responding, to this.
A while ago I read about a robot who had, apparently, been able to mix two different kinds of medication into one that could be helpful to cure something. Or at least be a profitable addition to it. This robot had been given the assignment to see if there was, within the database of this pharmaceutical company, a way to make things easier. They succeeded. Although in a way this is good news, it’s also scary. There were studies in the article about how truly magnificent this robot was at its job. Though I have, in a way, no doubt about this, it shouldn’t be the robot coming to this conclusion, but a doctor, who included the robot in his/her study material. This is what bothers me. What scares me too.
If a robot is, in a way, given carte blanche (it already has) then what are we to expect next? To hear we might aswell be dead because ‘Mr Robot here can fix everything’.
So many jobs are being taken at the moment already, because of the crise, because businesses were simply never that good to begin with, but also as robots are being trusted with jobs that should be for humans, really.
In ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ we’ve seen Charlies’ father becoming unemployed as his father looses his job to a machine. You feel for him. Now feel for yourself how many robots are doing the exact same thing. Making more mistakes and getting away with it!
Your mail (the paper stuff, yes) is being sorted by a machine. I’ve been living where I currently live for over 7 years. The post gets lost regularly. To be never seen again, as it wasn’t posted ‘with insurance’. This is the only legitimate way to be able to complain about post getting lost, by the way. About a week ago a delivery got pushed in our mailbox that wasn’t meant for this address. It was send with ‘track and trace’. All the postman had to do, was click his computer thingy to say he had delivered the package. Had I not taken the package and delivered it myself to the correct address and the person it was meant for, had filed a complaint, all the computer would’ve said ‘mission succeeded’.
We have a tricky parking system. You have to put in your license registration number to avoid getting a ticket. You can’t park your car anonymously. Type the wrong input and you have to buy a whole new one, as the one you’re holding in your hands is not for your car. WTF?! Yes, two different judges have told the parking company this is a load of bullshit, thankfully, but again: this was computers people had to deal with. They couldn’t just explain to someone who was present that hello, they paid?! No, they had to go all the way to court.
Robots are used in every day traffic. As they remember everything, this is helpful in certain matters, but it’s also quickly used against you in case something that’s yours gets stolen or is lost and found by someone who lacks it just aswell. Around here we have the blasted, good-for-nothing OV-chipknip. It’s a card that you’re obliged to use in Public Transport. You have to check in with it on an electric pole and check out after you’re done with your travelling. Thanks to that fucking card this country has lost more jobs than it has created money for anything else than the one who came up with the idea. It so happens that only tourists and people who travel sporadically, can travel anonymously. Other than that, travelcompanies will want to know who you are. God knows why. And he doesn’t want to be disturbed with these matters, so why bother?
OK, I do know ONE purpose where I’d actually want robots to be used. Even if it is just a statement. To let both industry and people know that those items really AREN’T for any normal human being.
Models. I’d love to see Karl Lagerfield and all his fellow design idiots simply use androids for their clothes. Maybe then they’ll learn that only a very low percentage of the world looks fantastically dressed as an anorectic broomstick with hayfever.
I doubt that will ever happen, however. It’s just not real