“A handful of ‘gods’, and then the rest of us”

Since the last Luddite uprising was put down in the early 19th century, it has been obvious that technology has been steadily replacing jobs previously reserved for humans.

For much of this period, the livelihoods that were disappearing were largely blue collar jobs. With recent advances in robotics and Artificial Intelligence (AI), though, the trend has shifted to white collar jobs, and, of perhaps greater concern, the rate at which all this is happening seems to be speeding up.

Over the last two weeks, The Guardian has put out a series of articles on the effects of robotics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) on the work force. The two principle sources are a speech by the Bank of England’s chief economist, and a lengthy report by Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

Together they make for sobering reading.

The first article, entitled “Robots threaten 15m UK jobs, says Bank of England’s chief economist”, reports on a speech given by The Bank of England’s chief economist, Andy Haldane.

Continue reading