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I agree that pointing out similarities between the telegraph and software industries isn’t nearly enough to make a convincing argument that software engineers will be replaced by their own creations. But when we think about which jobs could be performed with artificial intelligence, what keeps software engineering off that list? It seems the biggest hurdle will be making software that can learn creative problem solving. That doesn’t seem like much of a hurdle given the progress of artificial intelligence.

It seems more likely to me that the percentage of people left out of the economy will increase, including people with all kinds of technical skills. And power and money will continue to consolidate at a rate just barely tolerable to those left behind.

Unless, of course the behaviors and habits we take for granted turn out to be more contingent than they seem when experienced day-by-day, and we come upon a set of contingencies, before it’s too late, that set us on a better course (ie. something changes).