Hundred years ago, most people didn´t even know what a car or smartphone is. Now it´s hard to imagine life without it. But what is the outlook in the future of humankind? Are all jobs still around? Will AI be the technology to change the world forever? And will we become a multi-planetary species?
Work in the future
Many ways of automation are already impacting the workforce, and many more developments are coming in the future. Drones are dropping off packages, driverless cars, and trucks taking you and your goods to a destination, etc.
While a digital economy is more and more happening, many things need to happen to prevent chaos and destruction.
The approach to work, job training, and the receiving of benefits like health insurance and pensions need to be a rethink.
The nations are shifting from an industrial economy to a digital one. The changes are happening with new business models that use automated robots and artificial intelligence(AI).
Some reliable jobs for people like restaurants, retail, or transportation are already affected by automation. Waitstaff gets replaced with tablets that make recommendations and explain the menu. And cashiers are being exchanged with self-checkout options which are getting more and more advanced.
Driving trucks, one of the more lucrative jobs with high school education, are replaced with automated vehicles.
Automated vehicles are expected to have fewer accidents and better fuel efficiency due to smoother acceleration and braking than human drivers.
Automated services offer a way for businesses to save big money. In a manufacturer of metal parts, a robot can perform the same job as four people with a one-time cost of $35.000. Additionally, it doesn´t need breaks, gets sick, or has health insurance.
It can be expected that many of the jobs currently available are going to be replaced by automated services sometimes in the future. But jobs that most likely will continue to exist are interpersonal ones like mental health therapy and social work.
We need to make primary changes and rethink the definition of which jobs are worthy of receiving a wage and benefits like insurance and pension.
Many people are already doing jobs that benefit society; however, yet aren´t paid, like different volunteer positions, mentoring, parenting, and other community activities. But it is time to start considering the monetary value of such jobs.
In the UK, volunteer work at least qualifies as “looking for work,” which helps people to qualify for social insurance if they are unemployed. Why not take a step further a consider volunteer work worthy of a salary?
Also, art can be beneficial to society and can be considered a worthwhile pursuit. A new economy could perhaps have a category for those who find meaning through self-expression.
The problem of many they have centered their purpose, identity, and meaning in life around regular 9-5 jobs. It is why unemployment can come with extensional worry.
But it wasn´t always like this in history; our identity was more based on family, community religion, and tribal matters. We may need to return to these identities in the new economy.
When workers are displaced by companies to cut costs and raise productivity, it not only means fewer people are working, it also means there making lesser money. It ultimately leads to the company selling fewer products and services.
Not only the drop in consumer spending is a big concern also health insurance. Many businesses already cut costs by hiring freelancers and while only having a small number of full-time employees.
Economists are suggesting portable or flexible citizen accounts, which include safety net items that all workers would get. And regardless of whether they are unemployed or working full- or part-time. These accounts have health and life insurance, retirement fund, and unemployment compensation, as well as credit for continued education and learning skills.
Jobs and technology are quickly changing, and society needs to educate themself lifelong. Fortunately, there are already many efforts made into remote learning, which are online courses. It allows people to learn on their own schedule both for job training and personal development.
Providing people with a basic minimum income and more flexible requirements for professional licensing would be a good start. There need to be new ways of taxing the wealthiest citizen to gain money and fund these programs.
The traditional ideas of a 40-hour workweek and minimum wages need to be a rethink. Now more than ever, technological advancements are changing business models and also threatening jobs in nearly every sector.
Many big concerns surround AI (Artificial Intelligence). According to the founder of Telsa, Space X, and Pay pal Elon Musk, AI is one of the greatest risks of civilizations. And it can also cause great changes to the job market.
Machine learning is what makes AI so competitive. It is the ability to make decisions based on a certain set of factors and then use the results of this decision to make future choices. This process result can be continuously be improved, which allows AI to replace all sorts of jobs like driving vehicles or making financial investments.
It makes other important decisions be it everyday things, finances defense system, or public safety.
In financial sectors, AI can spot tiny changes in the stock market and signal a good time to buy or sell stocks. It can also determine if someones qualify for a bank loan. It is why Banks could soon reduce their staff in half.
Military use AI to scan through huge amounts of surveillance footage find and flag anything that looks suspicious or unusual.
However, there are many problems and ethical issues. An example would be the AI, which is used by a Chicago law enforcement to predict which areas are most likely to have criminal activity. The predictions led to complaints that the police were harassing innocent people.
The prognosis of AI can never be totally objective because they are heavily influenced by the quantity and quality of the data used. And the value judgments of the designers what they define fair criteria for the system.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a major component of the digital economy. It is made possible through the new high-speed connections of 5G internet. This allows IoT to become a reality when entire systems or physical goods and household objects are connected and can be monitored and adjusted in real-time.
With 5G sensors, water leaks can be spotted immediately in a city. It can reduce water waste, especially in warm areas where it matters even more to have enough water.
In some areas, “smart city” initiatives are already integrated that use real-time monitoring for everything from garbage collection, public transportation safety, and energy management.
Other sensors called Shot Spotter are recognizing the sound of a gun being fired and then immediately send coordinates to the police for a fast response.
Smart traffic lights can replace common inefficient lights that only operate on one pattern where it doesn´t matter how many cars are on the road. It not only reduces traffic but when traffic lights adjust in real-time it decreases the pollution of cars and people are getting to their destination faster.
IoT can also hugely impact the health care industry. When monitors and sensors make health data in real-time available to any medical professional via cloud storage. The increasing number of monitoring devices can help a lot of patients that are in hard to access areas and are at health risks.
Traveling into Space
1969 the first humans Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin with the NASA´s Apollo mission landed safely on the moon and returned back. But nobody since then was on the moon.
It is why many billionaires entrepreneurs want to fund their dream of space exploration.
The Amazon founder Jeff Bezos creates with his venture Blue Origin a rocket system called New Shepard. The system isn´t designed for speeds to reach the moon but more to make space tourism become a reality.
While traveling to the moon is possible, the problem for humans is to survive long periods. So we need enough air, food, and water.
The moon doesn´t have an atmosphere rich in oxygen like the earth. So there needs to ways to generate oxygen there or to bring it from the earth. Luckily there is a vast amount of ice on the moon, which is found in all places where the sun can´t reach. It can not only be a source of drinking water; it may also be a great source of oxygen.
When harvesting oxygen is possible, food can be grown. To gain energy for cities, solar panels can be used and placed on mountain peaks where the sun never fully sets.
One big issue there is dangerous levels of radiation on the moon due to solar flares and the lack of a protective atmosphere.
A possible solution would be to build underground shelters using lava tubes from ancient volcanoes on the moon. So the population would be safe from the sun´s radiation with deep underground shelters.
Another billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk behind SpaceX plans to make human beings multi-planetary by colonizing the mars. SpaceX has already made significant contributions to space travel with a clever rocket system that utilizes reusable booster rockets.
It reduces the cost to only a thousand dollars for every pound of payload instead of single-use rockets that had a standard price of one hundred thousand dollars. They already made many demonstrations, for example, rockets that land synchrony on a platform.
Elon Musks’ grand vision is to build entire cities on Mars that uses primarily solar energy and is build by people that continually being flowing out.
Mars also has unique challenges like the moon, along with dangerous levels of radiation, the planet atmosphere also presents some complications. The air is mostly made up of carbon dioxide and only one percent of atmospheric pressure that is on earth.
The low atmospheric pressure means that the temperature which is needed boil liquid is much lower. People need to have spacesuits for the pressure because the slightest of opening on the suit could start boiling a person’s blood.
The gravity is very little on Mars, while our body and muscles are built for earth conditions. There needs to be a way to prevent atrophy (the decrease of body parts cell organs or other tissues). Currently, astronauts in low gravity have to walk at least two hours on a treadmill every day to stay healthy.
Building a city on mars won´t be possible by using manual labor and transporting materials and equipment because this would be way too expensive. So there needs to be a different method such as nanotechnology with a material called graphene. This graphene is made up of carbon atoms that have been bonded and formed into micro-thin sheets that are surprisingly durable. And two hundred times stronger than steel.
These sheets can be rolled into carbon nanotubes and then used to form materials for making buildings, bridges, and homes. Graphene is also useful for conducting electricity. But the problem is there are currently only tiny sheets about the size of postage stamps that can be produced. Chemists are hopeful that mass production would be possible in the next century.
Of course also the above mentioned Artificial Intelligence and robots are needed to work under the hot Martian sun. There are perfect for exploring both Mars and the Moons dangerous areas such as old lava tubes. They can withstand extreme temperatures and radioactive atmospheres.
This automation needs to be polished so they work as they should, which may is already possible in the near distant future.
Beyond our galaxy
As long as travel to moon and mars was a consideration, we have been wondering what awaits us on distant planets and faraway galaxies. If there any earthlike planes out there in the deep space?
An important tool called nano ship could help by answering these questions.
The nano ship is a thumb-sized spaceship that carries a computer chip with billions of sensors. It travels in brilliantly fast speed with Light sails that use the pressure of light to move similar to sail of a ship with the wind. A laser or the sun’s rays are used to prober itself along a set course.
Other sensors of a nano ship could record data, take pictures, and the information back to earth. The big advantage is a nano ship doesn´t need expensive rocket fuel, and because it is so lightweight, it could travel to the moon in five seconds.
One destination could be the closest neighboring stars system, the Alpha Centauri System, which is four light-years away. A nano ship could reach it in around twenty years.
While this sounds pretty exciting, there are still some serious obstacles to overcome.
The big problem is to find a suitable power supply as it would take at least 100 gigawatts of power to get one nano ship to the Alpha Centauri System. Our current nuclear power plants max out at only around one gigawatt. So there need to be better energy sources or enough funding to power a project like this.
Another obstacle would be if the laser beam is just slightly off when hitting light sail, the nano ship could widely end off-course. And the laser beam also loose half of their power just to get through the Earth atmosphere.
It may be possible to put a laser station on the moon and launch a nano ship there or elsewhere in space. For solar energy, panels could be used to the lases beams fully powered. These are tasks for robots and artificial intelligence.
Let’s assume a nano ship would found other galaxies and earthlike planets with similar gravity and atmosphere. So now we only need to travel to the new world?
Well easier said done with this far away distances involved, it would take centuries to reach it.
A solution would be multigenerational starships, which the capabilities of traveling this vast distance while sustaining the life and death of several generations of humans.
But if the population on the ship from 2000 people to 4000 people it could be a disaster. So a birth control, food rationing, and other careful monitoring are needed.
Another way to survive this trip would be to defeat aging and illnesses. Some entrepreneurs and millionaires investors are already putting a lot of money in antiaging techniques and to find a cure for death. Others are working on telomerase a natural enzyme to prevent cells from dying.
However, many scientists are excepting the antiaging, and eternal life won´t be discovered any time soon.
Automated robots and artificial intelligence performing will make more and more tasks that most day jobs compromise today. It is why there needs to be a new definition of the jobs and changes in wages and benefits.
To find ways of securing the future of humanity, we need to look into the deep space for other habitable planets. Or find ways to turn mars and the moon into viable and livable options.
But we not only need SpaceX rockets; we also need to keep developing nanotechnology and intelligent machines to build liveable cities on other planets.
While it all takes time, AI could be the saving of humanity or the death.