The world is constantly changing, and so is its technology. Robotics is constantly evolving as a subject and so is the output of the brilliant minds that study it and use it to build machines that are getting more and more efficient by the day. It comes as no surprise that these wondrous creations are changing the way we live our lives and earn our livelihood. Especially in business, what once took days or even weeks to finish can now be done in a matter of hours or minutes. And while it isn’t bad, it’s not all good either.
1. They Cause an Increase in Unemployment
With so many different kinds of machinery that are programmed to do a wide range of tasks, human beings who would usually be paid more than it would cost to buy a machine, tend to lose their jobs. Especially in the case of businesses, this happens on a large scale, and the humans who are let off run the risk of unemployability if they don’t train themselves for another line of work.
2. Unless They’re AI, They May Not Know How to Respond to Unexpected Situations
Machines are essentially little more than lines of code fed into a hunk of metal or plastic. This makes them vulnerable to malfunctioning if presented with a situation they do not already know how to handle. Unlike human beings who normally have the intelligence to find the solution, machines tend to give out confusing outputs when given an unfamiliar input. With the evolution of AI, this matter (calling it a problem or a blessing is still a debatable question) is slowly being addressed, but simple robots will never be able to overcome human beings in that respect.
3. Machines Reduce the Risk of Error
In situations where the requirements are minimal, however, machines do a very good job of keeping the number of mistakes made. Nobody is a human paragon, and everyone tends to make mistakes every now and then. This is not the case for a program, for it is easy to do the same thing over and over again as needed and that boosts efficiency of a business, especially if it is an industrial company.
4. They Perform Tasks That Are Dangerous for Humans
Machines can be built to endure things that humans cannot and perform tasks that are potentially life-threatening to a human being. Using such machines reduces the possibility of injury or even death, in turn reducing the number of people who are permanently disabled because of their jobs, while leaving humans to do the simpler or at least less dangerous work.
5. They Help Improve Workplace Culture
Using robots to perform certain tasks that were formerly done by humans can foster a slightly carefree environment in the workplace with workers having a little more time for themselves. They can also be used to enhance the work done by humans, or complement it. These in turn lead to general satisfaction and well being of a person and helps ease their burden.
Every modern advancement has pros and cons, and it is important to know all of them before making a decision as to their true value. Right from guns to artificial intelligence, several of the top minds of the respective fields of interest are butting heads, trying to find definitive answers for the human race. And, since there is no definite answer to the question of whether robots truly do more harm or good, this leaves us to judge for ourselves for the time being, and run our own lives accordingly.