The automation of knowledge work: What will your job be tomorrow? Premium

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Remarkable new technologies have emerged in recent years, including self-driving cars, robo-journalists, and computer programs that can trick people into thinking they are human. Business Digest presents the research of MIT Sloan Management professors Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee on the implications of such technologies for your job.

Advances in artificial intelligence
Computers have suddenly become capable of handling tasks that hitherto required human intelligence. With their “perfect memories” and “high-powered CPUs for data analysis,” research suggests that robots are poised to take over certain manager-like roles, such as project management and scheduling and decision support.

Business in the second machine age
Who will be the winners and losers of the new economic landscape after smart machines? New technologies offer the opportunity to significantly increase productivity growth, but also threaten to make the jobs of many people redundant. According to Brynjolfsson and McAfee, the real danger lies in the link between new technologies and rising inequality.

How to work with smart machines
Do smart machines spell the end for human employees? No, say the authors, who insist that new technologies are best suited to augment human potential, not replace it. Moving forward, write Brynjolfsson and McAfee, “Effective production is more likely to require both human and machine inputs, and the value of the human inputs will grow, not shrink as the power of machines increases.”

Get inspired by other companies using smart machines!
Read our full dossier to learn more about a capital venture firm that has placed a robot on its board of directors; a bank that is using automation software to free up the time of human talent for more creative tasks; and a document services giant that is harnessing new software to improve its hiring processes.

Based on, among other, The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies by Erik Brynjolfsson ad Andrew McAfee (W.W. Norton & Company, January 2014), “Hong Kong VC firm appoints robot to its board by Aviva Gat (Geektime, May 2014) and “Deep Knowledge Venture’s Appoints Intelligent Investment Analysis Software VITAL as Board Member (PRWEB, May 2014).

Watch the video:

The Rise of Artificial Intelligence

A dozen experts in robotics explain that the answer is to enable machines to constantly incorporate and adapt to new information the way the human brain does.