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Comment Re:If robots were advanced and inexpensive enough. (Score 1) 280

What if I could purchase a robot that could go out and earn a living for me?

You can. You just have to buy shares of a company and vote for a board that will fire employees and replace them with machines and algorithms in order to increase dividends.

The caveat is that you need to have so much money that you already don't need to work. If you don't, then you'd better vote for universal basic income, because those who have will do anything to increase their dividends, including replacing you with machines and algorithms.

Comment Re:Fake news, see the MASIE data for yourself (Score 1) 211

Climatologists are not mechanical engineers, they are PhD's. I agree, engineers are very careful about the details. However, PhD's don't have life-risk to consider. I fact, there is overt manipulation of the data upon which most (if not all) of the climate "conclusions" are based.

Oh yeah, like the engineers at Volkswagen that cared about the details of their vehicles emission.

Engineers are in the first row when it's about cooking the data to fit the specifications. Dishonesty is everywhere the same, as long as it involves a gain. Most people don't care about being right or wrong, they just care more about themselves than about the facts. It's putting feelings over reality. Which might explain why you elected Trump.

Comment Re:NO ONE is anywhere close (Score 1) 87

We're still a lot farther away from truly autonomous cars than most people tend to think. Sure, driver assist and suped-up cruise control is coming in, and will be great on clearly marked and standardized interstates. But good luck trying to get a computer to navigate the old backroads of some city or country backwater.

Hell, Alexa still can't even understand a lot of basic questions I ask her. I'm sure as shit not about to let that bitch drive.

Inferring the performances of a vision based vehicle control software from the performances of a natural language processing software is about as relevant as saying that all hammers are flawed because your screwdriver is not functioning properly.

Comment Decency? (Score 3, Insightful) 513

The lawsuit raises interesting questions, such as whether employment law requires corporations to have the sort of common decency we expect from individuals.

They don't. And that's exactly why they were created in the first place: to avoid pesky human feelings from hindering business.

Comment Re:Weakening of schools (Score 1) 632

I think it's not so much because of the ratings than because of cynical politics. You see, lowering the grades allows you to temporarily reduce the unemployment by having a whole generation with higher degrees than the previous one. Temporarily because of course they don't have the associated knowledge, but it doesn't really matter since they were not necessary in the first place and sometime someone will figure this out. The politics have understood that some time ago and make a huge benefit out of it.

Last I checked, master's degrees were delivered to about 25% of a generation in France (i.e., 25% of the people born in 1990 have a master's degree). It's awesome from the societal perspective, but do you really believe we need that many people with that much qualification (assuming they have it)? I think not. In less than 10 years, I bet you that masters will be awarded to half of the generation, and that the PhD will be the next hype degree.

No society needs such amount of MScs and PhDs, for sure. You have to realize we are already in the employment bubble. We have automated things so well that a non-negligible portion of the population is useless, and it's growing. Since we don't know how to build a society outside of employment, we have to give them fake degrees leading to fake jobs. We have to say that it now requires an engineer to fill a spreadsheet. Of course, it doesn't, but guess what, the guy doing it isn't really an engineer and anyway the spreadsheet is useless for the project it's related to.

This is a bubble, and I think it will burst sooner than expected with investors refusing to fund fake jobs once it's obvious that they are what they are.

Comment Learn to read properly (Score 1) 251

Apparently you miss one very important word in my sarcastic post: 'most'. That and the fact it was sarcastic like the previous comment.

Some student are doing just fine, like your daughter, because they got caring parents that gave them a good basic education and could build up from there. They even tend to do better thanks to the effectiveness of current technology. Good for them.

Most students, however, are just plain disastrous. They'll never get bilingual and trilingual is not even considered. For most of the younger people, technology is not an aiding tool, it's a replacing tool. Which means that they don't use the tool the help them doing better (more efficient, more correct), but they use the tool to do something they are completely incapable of doing without it. They don't even know that they are not capable of doing those things.

What online search and social media have done is widen the gap between the good and the ugly. People that were on top are now on a higher top, people that were at the bottom are now at a deeper bottom, and they account for the majority. We believed technology would allow for a cheap mass education and that rapidly we would be in a society of geniuses. Turns out it doesn't work that way, and you can't solve a social problem with a technical solution (that never worked). Because nobody wanted to pay high enough taxes to have a correct education system, we now have a mass of incompetent dudes that don't even realize they're incompetent but still have high expectations of what their job (or better, salary) should be because they're doing college. You have the illusion they're doing fine, but it's technology that's doing fine. With growing automation, they'll be rapidly completely out of the business.

Of course it's not as black and white as I'm putting it here, but you get the idea.

Comment Re:Yellow Journalism (Score 2) 251

He's probably right, eventually taking your glasses off will be like suffering from some kind of learning disability. All text you see automatically scanned and available for perfect recall, the name of ever person you meet whispered in your ear in case you forgot, any equation instantly solved... And an unquenchable thirst for Pepsi, an uncontrollable urge to buy a Tesla.

It's already sort of the case. Most of modern students are incapable of doing anything if they don't have facebook to ask elder friends for what to search on google. And then they have an unquenchable thirst for Pepsi. Conclusion, you don't need a brain interface to sell crap and render people useless.

Comment Re:work less (Score 1) 723

I haven't seen anyone come up with a good reason people wouldn't use basic income to work less and be lazy. I can tell you, if I had guaranteed income for life, I would probably not ever work again.

And then natural selection kicks in. If you sit on your butt all day watching dumbing down tv while eating greasy food, you're likely to die very early. Good riddance! UBI is actually a way to get rid of all the lazy useless assholes while indeed committing no crime. I think it's priceless.

To be even more effective, I think we should double the amount of UBI if you opt in for sterilization.

Comment Re:The republicans will... (Score 2) 399

Without being too cynical (although one has to be given the long history of mankind):

- For the vast majority of people and during the majority of human history, work is a burden, not a pleasure
- People tend to love the output production of work more than work itself
- Humans working for other humans is a way of enjoying the output without the burden of working by yourself, if you are potent enough to afford that
- Everyone want to be at that position where you get the benefit without doing much for it, that's why human workers keep asking for higher wages
- Automation is a way to enjoy an increased output compared to human work, without the burden of having to share part of it with human workers
- Every automation that removes some humans lessen the part that you have to share with other humans, and is thus highly beneficial

Like the OP said, when technology has arrived to the point where there is no need for human work anymore, then 99% are just useless parasites and can safely be eliminated. The remaining society will resemble the utopia in The Dancers at the End of Time by M. Moorcock, which is good if you ask me. Now the problem is, you and I will probably not be part of it, unless your assets put you in the top 1%ers.

Thing also is, it wont be an on/off switch. Changes are gradual and the more technology progress, the more people tend to have zero value on the work market. In 5 to 10 years, the large majority of people working in transportation will be useless. In 10 to 20 years, the majority of people processing information (secretary, accountant, ...) will be useless. Depending on the field, people working in commercial fields will be useless in a shorter or longer time frame, starting with asset managers who are easier to replace. The question is not whether it exists some work that cannot be automated, be rather when you job will be automated. And believe me, it will be you our lifetime.

You have a ticking clock above your head and must enter the top 1%er before its final tick. If you don't, you will see what it was like 200 years ago and like you said, you don't have the knowledge to be self sufficient.

Comment Your skills will be automated too (Score 2) 176

I really hope you will retire before 20 years from now on, because at that time being a self-taught PHP developer will be totally worthless on the job market. That's why the maths are important. The more the time grows, the more low cognition level skills loose their value.

So now you're doing web services in PHP for a living. I'm pretty sure in a not so distant future this will be replaced by a series of drag and drops of functionality boxes in a special designed software that a guy paid on tenth of your salary can do. What will you do when that time arrives? Develop the boxes, these require a lot more maths. Develop the software that produce the software from the boxes? That requires a tremendous amount of maths.

Yes it is not necessary to have a big background in maths to write basic software now, thanks to simpler programming models. The thing is, writing those software will be unneeded pretty soon, because the next programming models will be so simple that they will render yours obsolete. You're like the mechanic refusing to learn how electric/hybrid vehicles work. No consequence right now, but not a very safe bet on the future...

Comment Re:I wish (Score 1) 71

More terrible advice. Programming will be the LAST job to be automated, because once that is automated you can use it bootstrap the automation of everything else.

Well it depends what you call programming. If it's the algorithmic part, i.e., designing a sequence of logical steps to follow to solve a problem expressed in natural language, then I'm ok, it will take a bit longer than the remaining. But that's math, not really programming, right? If its translating specification into machine code (pissing code as we call it), then it's already started to be automated. My guess is that in less than 15 years nobody will be hired to write code for the sake of it.

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