AI is going to take our jobs. Just not the ones you thought.

How to prepare for a world where machines do the math.

Nathan Shedroff
Jul 26, 2018 · 5 min read

But machine learning is really good at math — and pretty much only good at math. This means that the jobs that are really in the crosshairs are math-based. It’s the accounting and bookkeeping jobs that will go first, not truck driving.

Artificial Intelligence — which is just another name for Machine Learning technologies — is changing everything: it’s how autonomous cars run, medical algorithms diagnose disease and read x-rays, and Alexa pretends to understand you. Jobs are going to be lost. In the popular press taxi drivers and truck drivers are said to be most at risk. But machine learning is really good at math — and pretty much only good at math. This means that the jobs that are really in the crosshairs are math-based. It’s the accounting and bookkeeping jobs that will go first, not truck driving. Most of these jobs require only simple math and being up-to-date on policy classifications — and that’s exactly what ML is good at. These jobs are already being replaced by a new generation of accounting software like Xero (and, this, after so many more were replaced long ago by Intuit and Great Plains). These are job-killing machines. With Xero, you don’t need a bookkeeper, except maybe for the 10% of the time you require some advice or strategic thinking.

At the precise moment when STEM people are shouting, “We need more math, coding, engineering, and software education,” ML is preparing to scorch the Earth of math-based jobs.

So what’s left after the white collar jobs go? Jobs that require judgment in ambiguous or dissimilar situations — like plumbers and electricians. These jobs are secure. Also, jobs that involve a human’s touch: masseurs, beauticians, chefs. As it turns-out, blue collar jobs are safer than we thought (they may just pay better, too).

“…Once AI and ML restructure the world of work, we will have to restructure education around creativity, innovation, and critical thinking. Instead of valuing education as career prep, we need to think of education as citizen prep.”

What we need are solutions that give humans a way to focus on the things they do well. Most people hate rote jobs already and many jobs people do now are simply not safe. So, why not give these over to machines? Humans have better things to do than plow fields, mine coal, watch endless live security camera feeds, or tabulate long lists of numbers. These aren’t actually our strong suits. Instead, we should be unleashed to use our critical and creative skills to solve problems, invent relevant, needed new things, and create.


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SEED is an open and independent marketplace for developers and deployers of conversational user interfaces (CUIs) that democratizes AI.

Nathan Shedroff

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Nathan is a serial entrepreneur, including the new SEED digital currency: www.nathan.com & www.seedtoken.io

seedtoken

seedtoken

SEED is an open and independent marketplace for developers and deployers of conversational user interfaces (CUIs) that democratizes AI.