Monday, July 16, 2012

Robots vs People, China edition.

(MIT Tech Review. July 16, 2012). Migrant Workers in China Face Competition from Robots. 

 Foxconn's Longhua factory complex, where Apple products are assembled. Most spend their days seated beside a conveyer belt, wearing white gowns, face masks, and hairnets so that stray hairs and specks of dust won't interfere as they perform simple but precise tasks, again and again. Each worker focuses on a single action, like putting stickers on the front of an iPhone or packing a finished product into a box. As managers told ABC's Nightline, which aired a rare look inside the factory in February, it takes five days and 325 steps to assemble an iPad.

Even assuming competition from nimble-fingered humans putting in 12-hour shifts, a single robot might replace two workers, and possibly as many as four.

If people's homes were less messy, robots would replace us in doing house chores. What is it that makes home environment so unstructured, compared to factory environment? Is it the children?

tags: control, tool, education, technology

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