New technology may lead to radical change, not necessarily

The rise of artificial intelligence, especially the most recent chat bot ChatGPT, has given rise to talk of workers in many industries being replaced by this technology. This is something I do not believe will happen for quite some time.

Ever since the rise of automation in the industrial work place in post-World War II United States there has been a concern amongst workers of all stripes that they could be replaced by machines. The rise of artificial intelligence now has those who work in white collar industries worried about their jobs and being replaced with a machine, though this is a common refrain I have heard before.

During the expansion of the internet and the ubiquitousness of computers in the workplace and households in the late 1990s, there was concern this technology would replace workers en masse. Many people would find themselves out of a job and few jobs would even be available. What instead happened was worker efficiency increased and new types of jobs were created.

In terms of artificial intelligence, even with the fancy demonstrations Google has done with its ChatGPT, I do not believe there will be a tremendous loss of jobs. For one thing artificial intelligence is just a machine. It only knows what it has learned.

Since it is a machine code, it has trouble adapting to environments it does not already know or has not already been taught. For example, one reason self-driving cars have not taken over the roadways, even with the massive amount of money spent in artificial intelligence, is they have trouble adapting to an ever changing environment. Artificial intelligence has trouble telling the difference between a piece of paper and a concrete block in the middle of the road.

There might be some uses for artificial intelligence. This can include sorting through massive amounts of data for scientific research or other such sorting ventures.

The idea that this will replace people in jobs is not something even remotely imminent. There are a large number of hurdles to overcome before that becomes the case.