AndersB

Rise of the Machines

34 posts in this topic

machines-master-market-300x190.jpg

The concerns about the future of economies around the world that some of us share in this forum are now going even more mainstream.

Paul Krugman, the 2008 Nobel Prize winner in economics, has just discovered a 30-year trend! Lo and behold - labour gets a decreasing share of the output of the economy!

121112krugman2-blog480.jpg

Here is another one; National Compensation of Employees divided by GDP:

122712krugman1-blog480.jpg

Krugman has written about this recently here, here, here, and here.

I wish Cobran20 was still around on this forum, he could have given us a technical chart analysis of where this will end. The bottom line is probably that wages will constitute a decreasing proportion of economic output for the foreseeable future until there are direct policy interventions.

The problem for governments is that taxes on labour will therefore continue to go down - while large corporates can legally reduce taxes by diverting profits to low tax jurisdictions. The simple example for this is to have a holding company with ownership of intellectual property to be located in a tax haven, while licensing the operations in local subsidiaries that end up with little profit on paper.

Another implication is that the financial markets will be further decoupled from the reality of wage earners. The stock markets can continue to do well, while workers experience increasing job insecurity.

So, capital will see a disproportionately large after-tax returns at the same time as labour will be further squeezed. The low wage countries will feel the pain as well. How can a call centre with human operators compete with a future software system based on Apple's Siri technology?

The stimulus programs by the governments worldwide will just end up being profits for capital - while the tab is put on the pile of public debt.

It is good to know that we have the world's best treasurer at the controls of our economic future. rolleyes.gif

Here is a good commentary from Bruce Krasting about Paul Krugman's epiphany:

http://brucekrasting...gmans-epiphany/

Edited by AndersB

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I can't wait for the day where we all draw welfare so we can pay a corporation for goods and services produced by its machines.

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Paul Krugman, the 2008 Nobel Prize winner in economics, has just discovered a 30-year trend! Lo and behold - labour gets a decreasing share of the output of the economy!

121112krugman2-blog480.jpg

Here is another one; National Compensation of Employees divided by GDP:

122712krugman1-blog480.jpg

Krugman has written about this recently here, here, here, and here.

I wish Cobran20 was still around on this forum, he could have given us a technical chart analysis of where this will end. The bottom line is probably that wages will constitute a decreasing proportion of economic output for the foreseeable future until there are direct policy interventions.

There is no technical bottom to those charts. There is no reason they could not go down to zero, just on a pure technical analysis.

I, for one, welcome our new robot overlords!

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I can only see it as an improvement to customer service.but will we need to wait 20 min to talk to a damn robot? i sure hope not/

Edited by savagegoose

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How can a call centre with human operators compete with a future software system based on Apple's Siri technology?

Siri: I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?

How can a call centre with human operators compete with a future software system based on Apple's Siri technology?

Siri: I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?

How can a call centre with human operators compete with a future software system based on Apple's Siri technology?

Siri: I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?

:D/>

Not only taxes on labour will be reduced but also taxes on consumption as less people have the money to buy the crap the robots produce*. Unless they pay the robots some wages. Then we can charge the robots exorbitant income taxes. My future may lie in organising robot trade unions.

There's been a whole bunch of debate on whether the US unemployment is structural. The powers that be are going to have to devise new ways of keeping us busy or else we will end up with a new luddite movement smashing up robots instead of cotton gins and looms. What professions will be safe in the future? I personally am stocking up on EMP grenades.

*Land tax baby! You now it makes sense :)/>

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BTT bank transaction tax, tax every in and out of a bank account. dont matter where the entity is, if they get paid in money, you get a tax.

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Siri: I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?

Siri: I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?

Siri: I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?

biggrin.gif

Not only taxes on labour will be reduced but also taxes on consumption as less people have the money to buy the crap the robots produce*. Unless they pay the robots some wages. Then we can charge the robots exorbitant income taxes. My future may lie in organising robot trade unions.

There's been a whole bunch of debate on whether the US unemployment is structural. The powers that be are going to have to devise new ways of keeping us busy or else we will end up with a new luddite movement smashing up robots instead of cotton gins and looms. What professions will be safe in the future? I personally am stocking up on EMP grenades.

*Land tax baby! You now it makes sense smile.gif

OK, so what if I use a robot to make the support call for me?

"My phone plan is barring overseas calls"

"I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?"

"My phone plan is barring overseas calls"

"I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?"

"My phone plan is barring overseas calls"

"I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?"

"My phone plan is barring overseas calls"

"I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?"

"My phone plan is barring overseas calls"

"I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?"

...

laugh.gif

Edited by AndersB

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Robomaid, my robotic vaccum cleaner, has a mind of its very own. It does the hallway. Then proceeds to do the lounge room. Next thing you know, it is heading down the hallway again. Yelling at it is totally ineffective.

The following Google YouTube clip demonstrates human interaction with a machine.

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OK, so what if I use a robot to make the support call for me?

"My phone plan is barring overseas calls"

"I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?"

"My phone plan is barring overseas calls"

"I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?"

"My phone plan is barring overseas calls"

"I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?"

"My phone plan is barring overseas calls"

"I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?"

"My phone plan is barring overseas calls"

"I'm sorry Anders, I didn't understand. Can you repeat that?"

...

laugh.gif

Sure, that would be amusing for the first millennia or two... :)

Robomaid, my robotic vaccum cleaner, has a mind of its very own. It does the hallway. Then proceeds to do the lounge room. Next thing you know, it is heading down the hallway again. Yelling at it is totally ineffective.

I was thinking about getting one of these such is my deep distaste for vacuuming and my mistrust of humans. Sounds like it has some issues. They're not cheap either so I wouldn't want to spend all that money only to end up with a device solely for the amusement of my cat.

Not that I am an authority on any matter, but could the decline have more to do with China entering the WTO rather than robotics?

A shift away from labour to selling dodgy derivatives to the rest of the world?

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I wish Cobran20 was still around on this forum, he could have given us a technical chart analysis of where this will end.

Chicken guts can only read so far into the future! As Firehawk stated, there is no reason why it can't go to zilch, which would make sense if technology progresses to make all human effort redundant. That would generate an unemployment rate of 100%!! ohmy.gif

On a personal front, I haven't posted as I've taken a break and concentrated on personal matters, one of which was caving into family pressure and buying an overpriced pile of bricks in Sydney, last November. This confirms that a market can remain irrational longer than your family can think rationally! sad.gif

I think that I've been in denial over what has happened and it hasn't fully sunk in. Anyway, I've told them that in 5 years, I'll have it professionally valued so that we can count our losses! censored.gif

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Chicken guts can only read so far into the future! As Firehawk stated, there is no reason why it can't go to zilch, which would make sense if technology progresses to make all human effort redundant. That would generate an unemployment rate of 100%!! ohmy.gif

On a personal front, I haven't posted as I've taken a break and concentrated on personal matters, one of which was caving into family pressure and buying an overpriced pile of bricks in Sydney, last November. This confirms that a market can remain irrational longer than your family can think rationally! sad.gif

I think that I've been in denial over what has happened and it hasn't fully sunk in. Anyway, I've told them that in 5 years, I'll have it professionally valued so that we can count our losses! censored.gif

Congrats on the pile of bricks Cobran. May your losses be small. :)

I've missed your charts!

Back OT there is an interesting article on drones on the ABC.

DIY drones for less than $400. Virtual flying would be a hoot however I can see some issues controlling air space particularly around airports.

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There is no technical bottom to those charts. There is no reason they could not go down to zero, just on a pure technical analysis.

I, for one, welcome our new robot overlords!

Thanks firehawk for your technical analysis comment. It seems Cobran is of the same opinion too.

Chicken guts can only read so far into the future! As Firehawk stated, there is no reason why it can't go to zilch, which would make sense if technology progresses to make all human effort redundant. That would generate an unemployment rate of 100%!! ohmy.gif

On a personal front, I haven't posted as I've taken a break and concentrated on personal matters, one of which was caving into family pressure and buying an overpriced pile of bricks in Sydney, last November. This confirms that a market can remain irrational longer than your family can think rationally! sad.gif

I think that I've been in denial over what has happened and it hasn't fully sunk in. Anyway, I've told them that in 5 years, I'll have it professionally valued so that we can count our losses! censored.gif

Good to see you around Cobran20!

Well, a happy family in your own home cannot be measured in money. I doubt housing will crash - it just probably will no longer be a speculative investment anymore. This is a good thing, I think. Houses should be homes first and foremost.

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Congrats on the pile of bricks Cobran. May your losses be small. smile.gif

I've missed your charts!

Back OT there is an interesting article on drones on the ABC.

DIY drones for less than $400. Virtual flying would be a hoot however I can see some issues controlling air space particularly around airports.

Quadrocopters are cool!

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Congrats on the pile of bricks Cobran. May your losses be small. smile.gif

Let's see:

Average wage in Sydney is around $80K

Average house price in Sydney is around $640K

640/8 = 8

I don't think the losses (nominal or effective) are likely to be small over time! furious.gif

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Let's see:

Average wage in Sydney is around $80K

Average house price in Sydney is around $640K

640/8 = 8

I don't think the losses (nominal or effective) are likely to be small over time! furious.gif

I'm in the same boat. Saved a big deposit and the rent vs buy equation is starting to stack up. Ms clown is starting to get edgy so I've only got another year max. :sadwalk:

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Welcome back Cobran. :)

Congratulations/condolences on the purchase. Fortunately Ms Medved is not so persistent and happy to rent... for now.

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The following story is a bit off topic - but somewhat related and somewhat amusing.

In a previous life (2004) as a state manager for an aerospace company, I was trying to win a contract to build a missile training simulator. Defence (DMO) was difficult to deal with, as usual, and insisted that whoever would win the work would have to provide everything - full integration with the missile model from the Israeli manufacturer, integration with the aircraft mission planning system, and full compatibility with the US spy satellite data. Surprise, surprise - the quote from the big names in town came in a bit high! I tried desperately to get the DMO to be responsible for something - anything, but to no avail. Nothing would be provided as government furnished equipment or data, and all integration interfaces had to be worked out by the contractor.

Are you still reading after that long intro?

Anyway, this is how I ended up talking to a satellite imagery data processing company in Washington DC about getting access to their processed databases and how to interface to them. Our discussions were chaperoned by some US defense person; let's call him the Spy-guy. The Spy-guy wanted to make sure that the US company did not divulge or promise anything that would be outside of the terms and conditions of the Foreign Military Sales agreement with the DMO.

During a morning tea break we were talking about the war that was going on in Iraq at the time (the 2nd one). Since we had been talking about data, I said:

"Why won't someone invent mechanical insects with sensors? That way you could swarm a battle environment and they would be difficult to detect. Even if individual little units were destroyed, full data coverage of the battle space would still be provided by the swarm."

You would think the response would be something like "yeah, interesting idea" but it just got deadly silent. Nobody said anything for several seconds. I then piped up:

"Oh, crap! You guys have those already?"

Now the Spy-guy was totally green in the face. Seeing the hope of a contract with the imagery data processing company fade dramatically I quickly followed with "Hey, these bagels are tasty!" This seemed to snap everybody out of their frozen condition and there was general murmuring agreement from the group about the good quality of the baked stuff.

We won the DMO contract by the way.

insect-spies.jpg

http://www.ubergizmo...ilitary-drones/

Are insect robots the future of military drones?

By Edwin Kee on 06/19/2012 20:04 PST

If you are talking about big boys’ toys, then surely being part of the military’s hush-hush research and development team would place you squarely in the front line of being able to play with such new technology. While UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) have done their bit in wars across the world to be able to scout enemy territory without putting human lives at risk, they are large – and unwieldy at times. What happens when one wants to perform a delicate operation that has a far more covert objective? This is where miniature sized robots come in handy – and insect drones could be the answer to this question.

The extremely tiny remote controlled vehicles that are based on insects will most likely have been deployed in sensitive areas to date, where these are called the micro air vehicles (MAVs), and will share similar physics as that employed by flying insects. The US Air Force claims that these insect robots will be no larger than your average bumblebee, and cannot be detected with the naked eye at a quick glance, especially when it is flying around. It would be more interesting if these insect robots had a mechanical stinger to deliver some sort of drug or poison to carry out covert assassinations, no? Definitely the stuff of science fiction from decades ago, brought to life.

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The gameshow winning supercomputer that couldn’t stop saying ‘bull****’: IBM forced to wipe hard drive after machine downloaded an urban dictionary

  • Artificial intelligence machine Watson began swearing after memorising the contents of the Urban Dictionary
  • It was fed the repository of colloquial English in a bid to equip it with the knowledge to pass the Turing test of computer intelligence
  • But researchers were forced to wipe the dictionary from the machine's memory after it started giving backchat to researchers

By DAMIEN GAYLE

PUBLISHED: 15:32 GMT, 11 January 2013 | UPDATED: 12:59 GMT, 12 January 2013

An IBM supercomputer had to have its memory wiped because its programmers could find no other way to stop him swearing.

Artificial intelligence Watson, which famously won Jeopardy! against the game show's human champions, kept making obscene outbursts after memorising the contents of the Urban Dictionary.

The website is a repository of English-language slang, and inevitably includes a range of profanities and insults completely inappropriate for polite conversation.

But Watson proved incapable of mastering the subleties of good mannered repartee and, after he began uttering obscenities, his masters were forced to delete the taboo vocabulary.

Watson is an artificial intelligence computer system capable of answering questions posed in natural language, specifically developed to answer questions on TV quiz show Jeopardy!

He competed on the programme against two former winners in 2011, and romped home with the $1million first prize.

For the show, Watson had access to 200million pages of content - including the full text of Wikipedia - but was not connected to the Internet while playing.

Eric Brown, the IBM research scientist in charge of tutoring Watson, had taught the computer the Urban Dictionary in an effort to make his communications seem more natural, Fortune reported.

It was an attempt to give Watson the knowledge he needed to pass the so-called Turing test, which gauges whether a computer can really 'think' by whether it is capable of carrying on natural sounding small talk.

But while Watson hungrily scoffed as much knowledge as he was offered, Mr Brown, 45, found that that his microprocessor-based pupil had much more difficulty understanding the subleties of human communication.

It was after he started answering 'bullsh*t' back to human researchers that it was decided to pull the plug on attempts to teach Watson slang.

Mr Brown's team had to wipe the Urban Dictionary from the computer's memory and develop a linguistic filter to keep him from swearing again.

...

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http://www.theatlant...-robots/267135/

NOAH SMITH - Noah Smith is an assistant professor of finance at Stony Brook University. He blogs at Noahpinion.

The End of Labor: How to Protect Workers From the Rise of Robots

Tweet JAN 14 2013, 10:15 AM ET

Technology used to make us better at our jobs. Now it's making many of us obsolete, as the share of income going to workers is crashing, all over the world. What do we do now?

Here's a scene that will be familiar to anyone who's ever taken an introductory economics course. The professor has just finished explaining that in economics, "efficiency" means that there are no possible gains from trade. Then some loudmouth kid in the back raises his hand and asks: "Wait, so if one person has everything, and everyone else has nothing and just dies, is that an 'efficient' outcome?" The professor, looking a little chagrined, responds: "Well, yes, it is." And the whole class rolls their eyes and thinks: Economists.

For most of modern history, inequality has been a manageable problem. The reason is that no matter how unequal things get, most people are born with something valuable: the ability to work, to learn, and to earn money. In economist-ese, people are born with an "endowment of human capital." It's just not possible for one person to have everything, as in the nightmare example in Econ 101.

For most of modern history, two-thirds of the income of most rich nations has gone to pay salaries and wages for people who work, while one-third has gone to pay dividends, capital gains, interest, rent, etc. to the people who own capital. This two-thirds/one-third division was so stable that people began to believe it would last forever. But in the past ten years, something has changed. Labor's share of income has steadily declined, falling by several percentage points since 2000. It now sits at around 60% or lower. The fall of labor income, and the rise of capital income, has contributed to America's growing inequality.

WHERE IS THE MONEY GOING?

What can explain this shift? One hypothesis is: China. The recent entry of China into the global trading system basically doubled the labor force available to multinational companies. When labor becomes more plentiful, the return to labor goes down. In a world flooded with cheap Chinese labor, capital becomes relatively scarce, and its share of income goes up. As China develops, this effect should go away, as China builds up its own capital stock. This is probably already happening.

But there is another, more sinister explanation for the change. In past times, technological change always augmented the abilities of human beings. A worker with a machine saw was much more productive than a worker with a hand saw. The fears of "Luddites," who tried to prevent the spread of technology out of fear of losing their jobs, proved unfounded. But that was then, and this is now. Recent technological advances in the area of computers and automation have begun to do some higher cognitive tasks - think of robots building cars, stocking groceries, doing your taxes.

Once human cognition is replaced, what else have we got? For the ultimate extreme example, imagine a robot that costs $5 to manufacture and can do everything you do, only better. You would be as obsolete as a horse.

...

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Now, humans will never be completely replaced, like horses were.

I for one have never seen a horse. f*cking journalists. If they want to write things which are so ludicrously stupid they ought to take up writing travelogues.

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Once human cognition is replaced, what else have we got? For the ultimate extreme example, imagine a robot that costs $5 to manufacture and can do everything you do, only better. You would be as obsolete as a horse.

I'll worry about AI when I ask a question in a search engine and really get something worthwhile back. I'll worry when wargames engines can actually fight back.

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I for one have never seen a horse. f*cking journalists. If they want to write things which are so ludicrously stupid they ought to take up writing travelogues.

The first time I got close to a horse it started urinating. I thought to myself, "how fecking rude!". Then I realised it was a horse.

True story.

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