An FYI About AI: 5 Jobs That Might Be Replaced By Robots Soon
Man versus machine: it’s been a subject of concern, the topic of many discussions, dating all the way back to the Luddites of England who defied the use of mechanical weaving tools in the early 1800s. Today, the prominence of improved algorithms, raw computing power, and big data has accelerated artificial intelligence (AI) — and exacerbated fears that far too many jobs soon will no longer require a human touch. Here are five jobs where, much like in an episode of The Twilight Zone, robots might soon rule.
1. What’s In Store
Devices that move around a store, handling goods and fielding questions, are coming. Already in place in some stores: robots with the capability of auditing out-of-stock items, low stock items, misplaced articles on shelves, and pricing errors. ‘Tally’, from Simbe Robotics, can also move alongside customers during shopping hours.
2. Well Done
At some eateries, including Panera and McDonald’s, front counter kiosks are replacing staff; likewise, mobile-ordering apps are putting the brakes on the need for a person at the drive-through. Short order cooks might feel the heat of robot productivity as well: At CaliBurger in Pasadena, California, a robot arm named ‘Flippy’ is turning out hundreds of burgers on its lunch shift.
3. Delivery On Demand — And On The Sidewalk
No, it’s not a Star Wars promotion meant to lure you into the theater to see the latest and greatest version of the hit movie: it’s ‘Starship’, a sidewalk savvy, small scale, six-wheeled cooler that can only be opened by the designated recipient using a smartphone app.
4. Somebody Call Security! Oh, Never Mind – It’s Already Here
Put a well-operating, inexpensive camera on a moving platform and it’s easy to see why security guards’ days might be numbered. Robots from SMP Robotics are already in place, cruising around properties with motion sensors and cameras. There’s even a robotic version with solar panels like those in the Mars rover, which ensures that remote areas such as parks, farms, golf courses and the like are visible to the mechanical eye.
5. Data Analysts Could Be Outnumbered
Artificial intelligence is a good fit for data analysis: If a robot can scan a store, learn what’s supposed to be in the aisles, and take corrective action when something’s out of place, looking at financial data to detect any abnormalities is a piece of cake. Products such as PricewaterhouseCoopers’ ‘Halo’ have the capability to process all of the firm’s data and look for anomalies.