[Bglug] Automation Charity

Logan Streondj streondj at gmail.com
Tue Jan 10 22:15:10 EST 2017

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Hi Francesca,

Yes that is a very hopeful video, and who knows, maybe it will pan out
that way.

He mentioned how now being a bank teller is a
"more cognitively demanding job" of a "social nature".

Which has certainly kept it safe so far. Currently a $1000USD computer
is still a thousand times slower than the human brain, though $1000USD
of hard drive space is only about 50 times less than the human brain

Right now, the social automated assistants (Siri, Alexa), and
cognitive heavyweight Watson, are restricted to high-end companies
like Apple, Amazon and IBM, since it is expensive to buy that much
hardware. So they are currently on "time share" or "cloud" model.

Based on current trends, by the mid 2020's estimates are that will be
able to buy as much computing power as the human brain for $1000USD
(1995 price adjusted). By 2030's it'll be a under a hundred dollars.

So by then it will be quite viable for medium and small businesses to
start replacing human staff en mass.

When agricultural productivity made people unnecessary on farms, it
was possible to take them off the job market by sending them to
school. Also there was much room for improvement in terms of cognitive

Though with machine intelligence, it is more of an influx of cheap
smart workers. So I see it as more akin to what happened to the horse
after the invention of the automobile. Where business owners are the
"riders". I know Mennonites still use horses, and in the winter can
still see the horse and carriage ride go around down town.

Ideally many/most would become automated business owners, and there
will be many different automated businesses.

Right now however only about 7% of working-age Canadians have strong
computer skills, and roughly 25% can't use computers at all, according
to this study:

As computers get smarter they will also get easier to use, but at the
same time much more complicated. After a certain point, for instance
if a computer is a thousand times smarter than a human, how much value
will an average person be able to add?

Also, initially he cites some statistics saying there is the highest
percentage of people working ever. I don't really know where he got
those statistics. Perhaps he is referring to how during the

For instance after the 2008 recession, while unemployment has gone
own, employment-population ratio has stayed about the same. Meaning
people simply stopped looking for work.

The recent rise in employment seems to be mostly from a restructuring,
where business owners can get multiple part-time employees for less
than fewer full-time employees.

The world employment to population ratio has also been falling, since
the early 90's

So my answer to "why are there still so many jobs?"
Is that we are losing jobs, but haven't hit the knee of the
exponential curve of human job automation.
It still may be a decade or so before we do.

I just like to be prepared,

On 2017-01-10 04:18 PM, EDUWBG wrote:
> Here's a Ted Talk - I've already started thinking along these
> lines
> https://www.ted.com/talks/david_autor_why_are_there_still_so_many_jobs
> Francesca
> Francesca Dobbyn Executive Director execdir at unitedwaybg.com 
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> -----Original Message----- From: Group
> [mailto:group-bounces at bglug.ca] On Behalf Of Logan Streondj Sent:
> January-10-17 3:52 PM To: Bruce-Grey Linux Users Group
> <group at bglug.ca> Subject: [Bglug] Automation Charity
> Hi All,
> I've been thinking about forming a charity to "help smooth the
> transition to an automated society".
> It would be on several fronts,
> * Advancement of education: by providing free or low cost,
> documentation, software and hardware, to help people learn how they
> can be producers and take advantage of automation. (I was thinking
> it could be similar to an extension of the STARS program).
> * Relief of poverty: by helping provide permanent housing solutions
> to people who lost, or never got jobs due to automation. (I've
> talked to the planning department and someone on non-profit housing
> board, and they think it is a good idea).
> * Advancement of religion: people are going to have little or
> nothing to do, and will need a way to come to terms with and adapt
> to the changing reality (Buddhism), as well as purpose which they
> can pursue autonomously and work towards mastery in. So a really
> big project which everyone can be a part of, like building angels
> (super-human robots) or robot colonies for colonizing
> non-liquid-water-compatible eco-regions such as deserts and other
> planets (Cosmism).
> Wondering if anyone is interested in participating.
> Thanks,
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Logan Streondj,
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