GE CEO Calls BS on Job Automation Fears

first_imgStay on target The idea that factories will be run by robots in five years is “bullshit,” according to outgoing General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt.It will probably take at least six or seven years.Joking aside, Immelt has joined Alphabet Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt in dispelling rumors of total automation.Humans and computers must work together—not in opposition—to be more productive, Schmidt argued at last week’s VivaTech convention in Paris.As reported by CNBC, the former Google chief cited a study suggesting 90 percent of jobs are not fully automatable; while some routine tasks may be mechanized, humans are still indispensable.“So what that tells me is that your future is you with a computer, not you replaced by a computer,” Schmidt said.Convinced there will be a shortage of jobs; the exec implored businesses to fill positions with “people plus computers.”“The computers will make people smarter,” he continued. “If you make the people smarter, their wages go up. … And the number of jobs go up, not down.”Schmidt’s theory is contrary to data released last month by MIT and Boston University: Researchers discovered that an increase in automation tends to negatively impact local employment.Just how likely are you to get the boot from your boss? Ask Web-based tool “Will Robots Take My Job?” The site is based on a 2013 report examining how susceptible 702 occupations are to computerization.“According to our estimates, about 47 percent of total US employment is at risk,” developers said four years ago.Immelt, however, takes this news with a grain of salt, calling bullshit on fears that grinning robots will soon be handing out pink slips to human workers.“There’s 330,000 people that work for GE, and none of them had a productive day yesterday, none of them had a completely productive day,” Immelt told the VivaTech crowd.“So my own belief is that when it comes to digital tools and things like that, that first part of the revolution, is going to be to make your existing workforce productive,” he said last week, according to CNBC.Thinking about a career change? This might be the right time to hang up the whistles (sports officials), put away the energy boards (manicurists/pedicurists), and return the uniform (waiters) in favor of something more secure.Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey. Review: ‘Daemon X Machina’ Has Big Robots, Small Fun on Nintendo SwitchThis Robot Is Equal Parts Lawnmower and Snow Blower last_img

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