“Hey Siri, read out my tasks for the day”
“Ok, Google, read the news”
“Alexa, play workout music”
Isn’t this how most of us start our morning? This fundamental change in our everyday routine, the way we interact with devices and humans is represented by the fourth industrial revolution.
The first industrial revolution saw the birth of the steam engine, the second was about mass production and the third was digital technology. Behold the fourth industrial revolution, artificial intelligence (AI), of which intelligence automation (IA) is a central aspect. While there is no stopping to the technological advancements, the fourth revolution, as you read this, is changing the digital, physical, and biological worlds around us with the promise of a better future.
The current industrial revolution is a lot more than technological change. It is harnessing advancements to create a tech-inclusive human-centered future. Is the fourth industrial revolution a continuation of the third? In a way, yes. But the evolution speed and scope of this change is what makes it distinct. Currently, the breakthroughs in the tech world have no predictive timeline which depicts the rapid speed of this fourth revolution.
What Will Define The Success Of The Fourth Industrial Revolution?
With changing times, education must pick up the pace to keep up. It needs to be altered to fit the required skill set for future generations to survive the revolution. While automation of tasks is happening, there will always be a human dependency for which the right guidance must be given. While a machine can finish a function, only humans can get the true insight out of it. Singapore and South Korea are actively retraining their workforces to withstand this need for new skills.
Balancing Wealth Production
With the help of intelligent automation, economies will boom with less resource usage. And the bane that comes with this is the possibility that this increased-wealth will not be shared evenly. It has been obsessed by Rober Solow, an American economist that wage inequalities saw an increase as technology advanced. By this observation, wage inequalities will continue to grow in the future if there is no equal wealth distribution. Economists have come up with a system, UBI (universal basic income) as a way to facilitate equal distribution of rapid productivity gains.
A recent study by Gallup shows that 85% of employees all around the world don’t feel engaged with their work. This means our usual 9-5 does not seem like our natural human nature. Jack Ma, co-founder of Alibaba says we should not have to work more than three days a week, four hours a day. This comes as a consequence of IA. With systems like UBI in place, the need to redefine work is more than ever, as we have to move towards more purposeful occupations.
A New Society
After reinventing work, it’s time to change society to be more human. More humans to accept new work practices and focus more on humanity and values that respect the environment. For this, the government must step up and plan accordingly to redefining societies to integrate the new changes.
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