December 19, 2015
What’s your imagination for the future? Oh, did a scene for Star Wars immediately come to your mind? Maybe you are thinking of huge machines that are slowly destroying the world? Whatever your scenario is, technology certainly takes place in it. Even if we are being realistic, robots will still be an important part of our future. Autopilot cars are already part of our reality, you know.
While you’re at college, you should always have one question to your mind: “Will I lose my job to a robot?” Robots will be going to combat in the future, so soldiers might be totally replaced by armies of machines. Machines will also be making surgeries, selling medicines, babysitting, and building. The real question is: are your studies useful or completely unnecessary when we take technological progress into consideration? What should you do during the studies to make yourself irreplaceable by a robot?
Avoid Focusing on Careers Susceptible to Computerization
You have limitless options while you’re at college. Your future is a blank piece of paper that you need to fill with interests, passions, knowledge, and specialization. Will you be following your dreams? What if your dream leads you towards a career that will be completely replaced by robots in future? We don’t want that to happen. Here are some professions that are already being computerized:
- Diagnostics tasks in healthcare
- Fraud detection
- Financial services
- Paralegal services
- Manufacturing and packing
- Household services
That list looked scary, right? In human society, there has always been a certain level of hysteria regarding robots. Are we afraid that machines might take over our world, or are we only concerned about our jobs? Despite the pessimistic predictions that technology would eliminate the need for human workers during the beginnings of industrialization, we didn’t see that happening. However, people did experience good changes, since there was less need for drudgery and the jobs involving labor became easier to handle.
The technological changes are still leading to effective substitution of labor, but they are moving towards more intellectual professions like medicine, banking, law, and engineering. When industrial companies started combining human labor with capital equipment, the positions for people were not redundant; they were simply changed. Since the low-skilled workers needed new skills, everyone started seeing education as the only way to success for new generations. That is still the case. That’s why you went to college after all, so if you’re trying to blame someone for the hard time you’re having during finals, blame industrialization!
The development of computers made certain tasks unnecessary (like doing mathematical calculations by hand and carrying documents from one place to another), but it did open a market for an entirely new category of jobs.
Don’t Worry; Robots Will Not Replace Your Intellect
No matter how advanced machines become, they will not be able to match and exceed the effectiveness, breadth and depth of human perception and intellectualization. A computer helps the architect design a better house, but it cannot replace his creative and innovative approach. Ideas, in a broader sense, are still a purely human characteristic.
Writing, musical composition, painting, innovative concepts, cooking, scientific theory… all these activities cannot be replaced by machines. In a study by Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael A. Osborne, these jobs were presented as the options with lowest probability of being replaced by computerization: recreational therapists, dentists, athletic trainers, editors, chemical engineers, actors, firefighters, economists, commercial pilots, real estate sales agents, machinists, technical writers, etc. As you can see, you still have quite a few options to focus on.
Now that you’re in control of your future, you should focus on one thing: self-development and adaptation. You can still choose the profession of your dreams. The only difference is that you have to make yourself adaptable to an ever-changing environment. How can you achieve that? Through constant work on your computer literacy and purely human skills!
Robots won’t take your creative drive away; they will only make it more efficient. Your social intelligence is another thing that cannot be taken away by machines, so you should work on those skills as much as possible. As a human, you have a natural tendency to recognize challenging problems and move outside the box to search for solutions. Robots can’t beat you on that. Whatever profession you focus on, you should make sure to develop your human potential as much as possible. Technology is not your competition; it’s your support to greater success!
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