There has been tremendous increases in computerization. Those who do not have medium to advanced computer skills will not be able to have a middle income or better living standard. Those without computer skills will be the new poor. I read a book 15 years ago called, WHEN WORK DISAPPEARS, THE WORLD OF THE NEW URBAN POOR by Williams J. Wilson. Mr. Wilson predicted that the future belongs to those with a high level of computer skills.
In the near and far future, the elite classes will process a combination of advanced education and computer skills. They will also be multilingual, especially in Chinese, Japanese, and the other Asian languages. Those who do not possess such skills will be on the periphery of society. Of course, manual jobs will be extremely few, if not extinct. Also service oriented jobs will also be fewer because of further and more advanced computerization. There will be a large chasm of lower socioeconomic classes in the future because of the massive increase of computerized jobs. Do you agree with this premise? Why? Why not?
I agree and disagree. I saw an interesting piece on the news a few months ago that made me realize business as usual will not be able to continue. A new company (don't remember what they were producing) was discussing the fact they could not find enough employees with a technical education to run their machines.
So as much as some slam Obama for Job growth he is on the right track, with the fact we need to re-educate our current work force and look at new type of industries, because trying to revive the old ones is really trowing gasoline on a fire.
The future jobs are still in manufacturing, construction, building maintenance (50 story building need more than a super) They will need a worker who is computer savy and also knowledgeable about engineering in general. I think you already see the flow towards a technical university education. There also will a be high demand for health care workers and care givers due to an aging population. Police and fire workers are already in high demand and as their jobs change so will the needed skills. And I see no chance of service related industries dying out, because I think the more we have to do with computers the more we may come to realize we need the human interaction.
So no I don't think there will be a few educated computer geeks running the planet I think computer skills will be the same as reading skills were a 100 years ago a must, but nothing exceptional.
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The need for labor is disappearing rapidly...
Agreed. Manual labor is becoming a thing of the past and so are the lower end of service jobs. These jobs are going to be increasingly computerized in order to save costs. In order to have a semblance of middle and better lifestyles, one has to obtain advanced degrees in technical, scientific, and mathematical fields. A plain bachelors degree, especially in the liberal arts and humanities will be an utter waste of time as there will be very few jobs which require this. Those who obtain such degrees will be the same as the manual laborer in the 1970s. The employment situation is becoming more dismal for many people. Now as it is, the majority of college graduates, especially those in majored in liberal arts, are doing jobs that a high school graduate used to do decades ago.
Ever heard the saying, "Too many chiefs and not enough Indians?"
There still won't be enough work for everybody. This has to do with the fact that people need food, clothing, shelter, medical care, some entertainment, and they only have 24 hours in the day, and they should sleep during 8 of them.
There comes a point at which we will simply be producing more than we can ever need.
I pretty much agree.
As an example, within 10 years there will be no more retail store cashiers or clerks (except in mom/pop stores, which are also disappearing...). That's half-a-million jobs gone right there. Or is it a million jobs? Whatever...
To a large degree I disagree.
I don't find manual labor disappearing at near the rate you do. While laborers are definitely becoming more skilled and knowledgeable they still exist and in some ways the group is growing. Automating the construction field isn't possible, although fewer people do more work all the time. Rather the skills and knowledge of each worker is increasing all the time and, until the recession, wages were growing at a fair rate. A skilled workman earned at least as much as a middle level office worker.
The service industry is also growing as specialized knowledge grows. It is nearly impossible any more to fix your own car. Home repairs are being left more and more to specialists. Even cutting your own grass is becoming a thing of the past. We just aren't willing or have the ability to do what used to be simple tasks.
I do not find multilingual workers particularly advantageous but for a few special cases. Instead I see a multinational language coming into use for trade/work between nations - probably English, possibly Spanish or a mix of the two.
Computer knowledge is a growing necessity and will continue to be so, but that is the field of specialists. No one is expected to be expert in all software, rather they will have to specialize in just a few and be able to learn others quickly and easily. General computer ability is more important than intimate knowledge of many software/hardware packages.
The world is changing, but we are far, far from becoming a world of office workers, forever sitting behind desks and punching keys. Somebody has to do the actual work, and the value of that work will increase as fewer people can, or will, do it.
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