There are some AWESOME technology grant opportunities available. But, I wonder if anyone else is unnerved by the future of robotics. I remember sitting in front of a beautiful console T.V. – hurray if you remember the old consoles! – watching reruns of Star Trek and The Jetsons. “Meet George Jetson, Jane his wife.” My dad told me we might have robots in 30 years. And, he was right. BUT, I was hoping the bots would be more like fun diversions. Instead, the bots are stealing the limelight while taking over the job market. I read that by 2021, there may be 4 million robots doing administrative jobs. REALLY? Administrative jobs? What are we to think?
So here’s my own techsplanation. Firstly, we have the realm of Artificial Intelligence, aka “AI”. How does one explain “Artificial” and “Intelligence” as a single term? Isn’t that like saying “Icy Hot” or “Tight Slacks”? Secondly, we have the realm of RPA or Robotic Process Automation. The combination of AI and RPA means that an intelligent Droid (C-3P0, anyone?) could be typing this blog post, and supposedly I’d be out of work. To clarify, I am very supportive of technology. I write a lot of STEM Grants, especially for schools. I am also writing a Bio-Tech Research Grant. But I hope my proposals are for the betterment of humanity, not the proliferation of robots that wreak havoc for the human workforce. Do you remember when Self-Checkouts were first implemented at your grocery store? Many people were upset and refused to use them. I thought they were great! Today, there are several stores that allow you to scan the bar code and bag items while you are actively shopping in the aisles. And I refuse to use them. For now….
When it comes to technology, a person’s age, location and upbringing may play a deciding role in whether we choose to accept or reject the rapid and disruptive changes we are witnessing. Where do you stand on this subject? Do you feel a “Robot takeover” coming on, or is this a welcomed addition to life? Please share! Thanks for reading.