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Comment Re:I have always wondered... (Score 1) 114

...but our immune systems do it in a couple of days, no sweat.

Except that's not always the case. We don't do it sometimes, see the various plagues and incurable infections like HIV, and in other cases, our bodies fuck this process up, and create for themselves autoimmune diseases. There are a surprisingly large number of autoimmune diseases out there, some minor and some debilitating and deadly, and these are the result of our bodies screwing up this process of developing antibodies.
 
Even as we can replicate this process better, we're going to have to be very careful that we're not causing issues like these. Last thing we want is to start injecting people with cold and flu antibodies that turn out to be a latent T-virus.

Comment Re: Revolution (Score 2) 127

As a vague theme along what is being described here, I don't see why that's a bad assumption. Most technological innovations have been about shifting where human labor is applied. What we're talking about here is outright replacing it. Anywhere it could get pushed to, we can replace that with robots too.
 
We're not too far off from robots handling almost all commercial agriculture, and almost all packing, shipping and delivery. Our robots will build other robots, and other robots will service those robots. Or just recycle them so the first group can rebuild more robots.
 
Robots already make a tremendous amount of the food we eat - if it's pre-packaged in the store, good chance that human hands never touched it. Self-serve kiosks, touchless carwashes, Siri, tax prep software, ATMs and online banking, etc., etc., etc.
 
We've still got our fingers in the art pie, at least for a bit now. Although we can now synth entire orchestras well enough for movies and video games that even those are getting squeezed. It will be a bit before we have robot opera singers and ballet dancers, painters and graphic designers. But how many people do these things?
 
What jobs are there for the tens of millions of people who drive something for a living? Who work in the food service industry? Who work in investment and tax fields? Law? When machine learning does a better job of medical analysis, do we still train doctors to do that work? Do we still need that many doctors?
 
It's not going to be a fast shift, but this isn't like the other technical advances in history. I honestly don't know what jobs people losing their jobs to automation are going to find. Because anything I can think of could likely be done better and cheaper by a robot.

Comment Re: CueCat all over again (Score 1) 191

I pretty much guarantee you that you spent more time setting that mode up, then I'd ever get back using it.

I'm about break-even on my Hue bulbs. It took awhile to set them up to mimic a sunrise in the morning, and a sunset in the evening. Living decently far north, I find it's really helpful during the winter to have a stable sunrise and sunset despite the darkness outside. I've had the same settings for 2-3 years now, and it's really, really nice. I wake before my alarm most mornings, and as the house "sunsets", it triggers me to go to bed at the same time every night.
 
But some time ago they released an "improved" Hue app, and while it's much simpler to use, I don't see a way to recreate what I spent a lot of time setting up. I ended up having to revert to the old one and fix a bunch of lost settings. That was a definite time-sink. And that's even with disallowing my IoT light system to access the broader internet. It's isolated on my network, and I just let one phone update its app.
 
And that's the other problem with IoT things - even when you have them set the way you want them, there's no guarantee that the company that you're relying on to allow you to manage them will keep them in the same state. Cue the time-sink and tinkering, to try to get what you want out of them.
 
The bulbs I bought and programmed were for a distinct need, and they fill that need. I have yet to find anything else in the IoT that falls into that category.

Comment Re:It's managers that should telecommute. (Score 1) 207

Managers telecommute? Are you kidding? You must never have worked from home.
 
When I do, I tend to get 8 hrs of work done the first 4-5 hrs, and then start looking for other stuff to do. If a manager did that, office productivity would be destroyed before anyone could figure out what happened.
 
I can't imagine the horrors that would be produced if a manager had tons of free time and peace and quiet to think about efficiency and team building. It's far better that they be busy most of the time talking to a groups of people in the office, because at least then, they're only impacting those people.

Comment Re:Suggestion: Alternative technology (Score 1) 99

We used Wunderlist for a while in the same way. The problem is that the dry-erase board on the fridge is always the closest thing when we discover we're out of something, so it gets jotted down there. Phones are often in another room. Then we were trying to remember to update Wunderlist from the board on the fridge, but that was 2x the data entry. So now we just snap a picture of the dry-erase board when we're headed out. And text the picture to each other if needed. It...actually is easier than any of the other options.

Comment Re:Another point to consider - truck drivers (Score 1) 168

I don't think 'freshly unemployed truckers' is going to be that much of a problem. It's not 875,000 people all at once. It's more likely going to ramp up over those 15 years, but that's a lot of time.
 
How many drivers will retire in that time? For every one that retires, you just won't need to hire a new one. It's not a job lost, unless you somewhat disingenuously call "I would like a job in that profession but can't find one" a lost job.
 
How many people considering trucking are going to look at the automation and decide that it's not a viable career path? Again, not really jobs lost.
 
Buggy whip makers didn't immediately go out of business when the Model T rolled off the lines. Like most change, truck driving will likely be a slow decline with a few dramatic drops as major businesses change over wholesale.
 
Just guessing, but UPS and FedEX are huge shipping companies, and I bet the first automation there won't replace the employee in the truck, because there still won't be a way to get the package to the door. However, that package handler could be relegated to the passenger seat. Just jumping out to deliver and jumping back in. The truck knows what's in the back, where it needs to drop it off, the road conditions and traffic, and picks the most efficient route. Not a job lost, but likely one that gets a reduction in pay, because the the reduction in job duties.

Comment Re:Pooled driving? Already exists. (Score 1) 168

Carpooling is ok, but thinking about where I live, I'd totally go for owning a self-driving car. My wife works about 10 minutes from home, I work about 20-25, depending on traffic. She leaves a half hour before I do, gets home a half hour before I do. Car could drop her off at work, come home, get me, drop me off at work, go home, and park in the driveway. 10 minutes before she heads out of work she can summon it, and it will take her home. Then 20 minutes before I want it, I call it. Or I go grab a beer if she's going somewhere.
 
No street parking, no lot parking, no real need for 2 cars, no adjusting the seat, no sharing with strangers. If she's going to be at the yoga for an hour, the car can come get me, drop me off at home, and head back to yoga.
 
I think this means a bit more congestion on the road, however. This should be mitigated by the auto-driving capabilities, and can be further mitigated by reclaiming parking for more lanes. We'd need a small fraction of the metered spots if cars could go park a little further away, and they could park in dense clusters, because they could move when one needed to get out.

Comment Re:Potentially a good thing (Score 1) 76

Several years ago my wife made a series of DIY crafty things involving cute animals. Probably 30-50 videos, 5-15 minutes each, and i'm guessing it was 2012-2014 or so. I don't know that she topped 1k subscribers, and she hasn't added a thing since.
 
She made $1k last year on ad revenue. That blows my mind.

Comment Re:Robots, robots everywhere! (Score 1) 396

I think you both just typed past each other, missing each other's point.
 
I get that you were lampooning "the sky is falling" posts, but you picked a lot of examples that, historically, pushed a lot of people out of their jobs. You know, like the "robots are coming" folks are talking about happening.
 
I passed a construction site this morning, and a dozen or so men were ripping up a block of two-lane city streets. I watched 2 guys in backhoes dump tons of materials into two dump-trucks (2 guys), while 4 more guys worked in the holes to uncover sewer and power lines, while 2 more guys supervised and 2 more directed traffic. They'll be done with that block by tomorrow.
 
A century ago it would have taken many times more men many times longer to do that same work. Check out the photos from depression-era make-work programs. There are huge numbers of guys with shovels in those photos. Today, there are a dozen guys, and only 2-3 of them have shovels. Many of your other comments show the same disregard for advancement at the cost of human jobs. "My boss sent an email" used to take a secretary, a memo pad, and a mail-boy to accomplish. A vending machine replaces several human vendors. Keurig and automated coffee and soda machines have replaced soda fountain workers.
 
The point that you seem to be missing, that your counterpart didn't do a great job of explaining, is that the speed of mechanization and automation is increasing, while the transition to other jobs isn't happening at all in many cases, and not fast enough to make up for the losses in the rest. The money made off this mechanization and automation isn't being reinvested into the workplace, and that's creating a wealth disparity unlike any we've seen in at least a century, if not longer.
 
Have you read anything about the white despair that's starting to get noticed? For the first time, the death rate of non-college-educated, middle-aged whites is starting to dramatically increase. The reasons are drug overdoses and suicides. Why? Because the mining, factory, and farming jobs they used to have are either outsourced or mechanized and automated. There is nothing left for them to do. They can't join the service industry because nobody around them has any money to spend on it.
 
What now for these folks? They're already desperate enough to kill themselves slowly with drugs or quickly with a gun. They're in their 40s and 50s, and could live for another 30 years, if they had something to live for.
 
"The sky is falling, ROBOTS!" that you're lampooning is already impacting people, even if you don't see it. While I agree that it's overhyped, it's very real, and the problems it's already causing are just going to grow worse, and rather quickly.

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