Here Come The Robots with Evan Shellshear

here come the robotsThis episode of the Big Bang podcast is part of the Next Economy Series, where I interview experts who are thinking and working on the cutting edge of emergent technologies that will shape the next 20 years. 

On this episode I’m joined by Evan Shellshear who, before returning to Australia last year, worked for 6 years at Sweden’s leading industry focused research institute, FCC. There he helped write and develop algorithms which run robots and production lines in the world’s largest automotive manufacturers such as GM, Ford, Toyota, Audi, BMW, Mercedes and many more. He has published around 20 scientific papers in peer reviewed journals in fields ranging from automation to robotics and is the author of the bestselling book Innovation Tools. His specialty is commercialization of new technologies and ideas and one area he is particularly passionate about is robotics.

Are the robots coming to take our jobs?

They will augment us; not replace us.

In the short-term, they’ll take over some job related tasks; but not complete jobs; everyone agrees on this: for now, productivity is for the robots.

What will happen in the next 10 years is less clear because a lot of it depends on the advancements that can be made in computer vision, speech recognition and general artificial intelligence. The bottom line is we’re not there yet.

Here are some questions that guided our discussion:

  • What does robotics encompass?
  • Traditionally, robots have been used primarily in manufacturing. What is driving the rise of robots in many industries?
  • What are the advantages of using robots?
  • What are the top barriers preventing robot adoption?
  • What is the potential for workforce automation?
  • What careers should humans be focused on and training for to ensure long term employment?
  • What are three jobs that will go away or drastically have reduced human workforces within five years?

Below is our discussion, listen and let us know what you think on Twitter @jorgebarba and @adrianpedrin.

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The Big Bang is a weekly podcast. Tune in every Tuesday for more discussions on what’s possible.

Intro audio is by Arturo Arriaga, outro audio is Candyland by Guy J.

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