10 Aug
  • By Eelco Lodewijks
  • / Blog


IT did not replace secretaries as predicted, it made them more versatile and efficient, while creating whole new industries.  Similarly, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Automation and Robotics will augment us, making everyone more versatile and efficient in every industry and sphere of life.  It’s already enabled the creation of a range of entirely “new” industries.

Technology has never destroyed jobs, it has created jobs as our workforce more than doubled in real terms, as follows:  In the 1920’s, only men worked.  Then over 50% of woman joined the workforce and another 50% was added when people kept growing older and working longer.  Employment/Unemployment is also more difficult to measure, as millennials want flexitime and to work from home, thereby exchanging time on the road for family time. 

Companies are increasingly contracting out work to experts, many of whom work from home.  Where I live, at least 50% of people are already working from home.  This allows people to spend more time with their families.

AI (including Data mining, Machine learning), Automation and Robotics are now literally being applied in every field and industry.  This suggests that the need for IT and Engineering technicians with very diverse skills is going to explode.  Think of the plethora of new job titles that never existed 30 years ago and easily replaced the jobs lost in agriculture and automated factories.

Yes, AI, Automation and Robotics are going to replace many logical, repetitive and boring jobs, but that only means our jobs will become more interesting.  Yes, this means that many people will need to be reskilled and everyone will have to become more diversely skilled, but that is positive.  Therefore Education, which is now widely available free online, must become an ever-present part of our lives.

As AI, Automation and Robotics take over more menial tasks, we must ask, “what will we be doing”?  We will be doing the hyper-human things computers cannot do, including Innovation, Creativity, Kindness, Compassion, Spiritual and Intellectual pursuits.   In other words, as AI, Automation and Robotics take care of our basic needs, we will move up Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.  I find it exciting, not intimidating.

Please comment or ask questions.  We would love to hear from you.

My book Technology Tsunami Alert will be launched mid-2020. 

Please also read the Gold/Silver and Investment chapters on my EelcoGold website.