is because facility managers today are constantly on the lookout for new trends which could help them save yet another dollar, while contributing to a better workplace. The company has over the last three years increased the number of robots working in its warehouses from 1,400 to 45,000. Thought leaders such as Elon Musk have once again turned to a universal basic income as a possible response. In the past, when you had disruption, the economy adjusted and jobs were created elsewhere, says Ethan Pollack, an economist at the Aspen Institutes Future of Work Initiative who says he wavers between optimism and pessimism on automation. According to the optimists viewpoint, a factory that saves money on labor through automation will either: Lower prices, which makes its products more appealing and creates an increased demand that may lead to the need for more workers.
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As MITs Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee put it more recently than Keynes in their 2014 book about automations economic impact, The Second Machine Age : Our generation has inherited more opportunities to transform the world than any other. Machines, you may have heard, are coming for all the jobs. Todays optimists believe that the latest automation technologies will create new jobs as well. What might that look like? It allows them to take another call, Bathgate says. But today, complete automation in infrastructure technology is the norm of the day. Robots are, in fact, computerized machines that are ultimately utilized to simplify larger scale tasks. So which side is right? The impacts of automation technologies are already being felt throughout the economy. While some warn of staggering unemployment, others point out that technology may create new job categories that will employ displaced workers.