Artificial Intelligence and robotics are litteraly game changers in the world of work. Some industries are already using massively robotics to improve their productivity, such as the high tech industry or the automotive industry in which the use of robots really expanded since the 1980’s.
In some other industries, the impact of robotics allow to create a more secure environment for workers, and even to accomplish missions that are highly dangerous, such as investigating a building on fire or entering a nuclear site like Fukushima. In these cases the use of AI and robots is critical to open new opportunities of intervention, that we could not perform without them.
The question lies for the rest of the works, which will be soon impacted by semi-autonomous machines before to see the arrival of autonomous robots. For example in the driving industry, which we know is looking for self-driving cars and trucks, which could be on the road in less than 5 years according to some professionals or the airline industry that looks for self-driving planes even if it will most likely take more time.
In this context, which is currently happening, one of the main question will most likely be to know the place of the Human activity together with the AI and robotic activity.
By raising this question, we are in fact asking: what can AI do or not, and how can it be supported by Humans ?
Some researchers who are looking at this question brings very accurate elements of answer. According to Andrew NG (2016), former VP & Chief Scientist of Baidu and co-founder of Coursera, “Yet the biggest harm that AI is likely to do to individuals in the short term is job displacement, as the amount of work we can automate with AI is vastly bigger than before”. And to continue with “As leaders, it is incumbent on all of us to make sure we are building a world in which every individual has an opportunity to thrive. Understanding what AI can do and how it fits into your strategy is the beginning, not the end, of that process.”
Very concretely, even if AI can not yet achieve all tasks that a Human can perform, most researches are guiding us on the fact that the tasks that require less than one second to be done or expressed by a Human could be automated, which covers a large amount of tasks such as calculation, tagging, basic translation, basic data management, simple executive assistance and more.
As a consequence, in some years, what will probably be left from these tasks are all the tasks that cannot be completed by an AI or a robot and that are the tasks that are specifically Humans by nature because they involve a creation process linked to talent emotions and creativity.
An example given by Andrew NG is the fact that an AI can actually be used to manage business data, but these data will be meaningful only if the software used is personalized to your business environment which is still as of today the talent that a data scientist will provide you.
In other works, such as design, some AI will soon be able to design automated advertising campaigns. But this will not bring you the touch of uniqueness that a talented and genious designer will give you by creating a campaign that will differentiate your activity from the others.
And in a last example, maybe an AI will one day be able to assist a jeweller in his creation process, or a cook in his innovative menu creation, but will it have the ability to create a final art piece without the Human talent that makes it unique, certainly not.
We could go for more examples in which the “Human touch” is actually so key for the realization of the final work that it will make it difficult to be done by an AI or a robot, but to put it in a nutshell, in a world of AI and robots, the difference will come from your talent and your ability to find creative solutions that will stand out from the artificial crowd.