our automated industries
Anyone that’s used a self-service checkout will be well aware that the change has already begun. As our world becomes ever more automated, not only will the need for shops continue to decrease, but cities could be drained of citizens as thousands move into rural areas for cheaper housing. Where will they purchase their weekly shop? Perhaps at a do-it-all vending machine, like this one (left).
Automated decision-making has played an important role in investment and trading for some time. Algorithms are able to process a greater number of financial announcements, press releases and other info more quickly than any trader – no matter how many stimulants they indulge in – and then act faster to take advantage of it. Services like Future Advisor currently use AI to offer personalised financial advice to more people at a lower cost.
Vehicles such as the Nissan LEAF already contain onboard computers and telecommunication equipment that enables the car to be automated, to a degree, but the future is more ambitious. The algorithmic vehicle controller on Google’s driverless car prototype can monitor its environment to a degree that exceeds the abilities of any human driver, looking forwards and backwards simultaneously using 360-degree cameras. It has driven 700,000 miles without an accident.
Amazon’s fleet of drones is, according to CEO Jeff Bezos, ready for launch as soon as Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulations allow them to occupy air space. In the meantime, it’s been improving those huge warehouses, with Kiva Systems, acquired by Amazon in 2012, allowing robotic pickers to grab products from packed shelves using barcode stickers placed on the floor. Soon, no human hand will touch your order at all.
Robotic factory workers, drones and driverless cars already have sights on your job