There has been some panic since it became public knowledge that Uber started testing Autonomous cars in September, 2016. 4.1 to 5 million drivers have been estimated to lose their jobs in the United States. Yes, self driving cars are coming, and they seem determined to take all the driving jobs.
The advantages of the self driving cars include: more mobility for children and the elderly, better navigation of traffic, most likely less accidents among many others. And while the panic is mostly ‘there’, here in Nigeria, the air is more relaxed, something like, “maybe they are coming for our jobs, just not yet…” that may be true, but I couldn’t help imagining the prospect of having to travel Jebba-Mokwa road not spending brain energy deciding which pothole is deeper and which is shallow enough to cause the less damage to your vehicle… and guess what; a human driver needs rest and vacation, while the Self Driving Car doesn’t.
While there are protests over this potential takeover by Self driving cars, with BMW and Ford have plans in place to roll out Autonomous cars by 2021, and there’ll be plenty more protests; the Self Driving Car is just one of the mediums through which Artificial Intelligence (AI) is carrying out its takeover.
Amazon is testing a store with virtually no employees, Warehouses are being run by robot workers,… the other I read how your TV would know what you want to watch, literally; just imagine walking into your living room, and telling your “smart cinema” the kind of movie you want to watch, the gender of the main characters and the length of the movie… I tell you, it’s coming on us real fast.
And the threat is in just about every industry; major production companies have to compete with Netflix and now everyone is streaming all the DVDs they might have had to wait longer for. Cinemas too could take the hit soon, as virtual cinemas could be right by the corner.
Now what do we do?
Bill Gates’ advice is that Robot Workers should be taxed and then the money be invested into training human workers in engineering and managerial jobs. This is valid advice, but I’m not sure if that would cover everyone.
They are coming for our jobs, in Nigeria, maybe just not yet, but this deserves our attention.
I’ll like to read from you in the comments section below. What do we do?