Artificial Intelligence: Freedom or Imprisonment?

There’s a big debate recently on the threat of AI (Artificial Intelligence).  Will computers take all the human jobs? What will humans do? Will humans work for computers?

I hear analysts talk about how many jobs will disappear by 2030.  Millennials already want meaningful work, the jobs made obsolete by AI are of no interest to millennials anyway.  Many have noted that we don’t know how many jobs will be created to replace the jobs lost by machines.

Will we be imprisoned or freed by AI?  

I’m more worried about people that think like machines, than machines that think like people.
— Tim Cook

Freedom.  The way I see it is that we are leveling up on the worker-food-chain.  We are clearing our brain space and our time to be able to focus on higher-level thinking.

Life is not a set of transactions.  If we believe that humans are a set of transactions and algorithms, then a computer can surely replace humans.  Alternatively, if we believe that humans are spontaneous, creative and emotional, there are things that keep us valuable to each other.

Imprisonment.  If we don’t move into higher level thinking, and creative work, we will be imprisoned by computers.  As a matter of fact, how will we even afford the conveniences they will provide if no one is working?

What would the economy run on if no one needed to work?  That would surely disrupt our whole concept of economics.  If we are only consumers, does the computer come up with new product ideas?  And we just buy them? Perhaps our whole job is to consume. This hearkens back to the movie Wall-E where the humans were boneless creatures unable to walk, living on a spaceship.

How do you think AI will affect the workforce? Let us know in the comments!