Just polishing up my crystal ball. I need to check it because I get a lot of conflicting information from the expert pontifications that I’ve listened to or read.
The predictions run the gamut. One side says things like, “There will be no good jobs because the robots and AI (that’s Artificial Intelligence) will be doing everything”. One, I particularly liked had the headline, “Robot Overlords. Please Don’t Fire Me”.
The other side says, “Not to worry, those computers are just dumb machines. They need folks to tell them what to do.” “The current state of AI is about that of an inebriated cockroach”. (their union has complained of “bug-ism”).
I forget who said, “predicting is very hard — especially when it’s about the future!” (Yogi Berra?).
Contrast all this with another prediction — namely, where a rocket will end up after being launched and scurrying about in outer space. Will, it hit Jupiter 15 years from now? Mars? I’d be willing to bet that if you picked a random group of scientists from all over the world, gave them access to all of the historical launch and path data, that they would all agree on the answer.
So, why can’t very smart folks (throw Watson in the mix) come up with the answer to the future jobs question and tell us what to prepare for?
You know the answer. The “future-jobs” problem is about 50 jillion times more complex than the “rocket” problem. If I were a betting man, I’d lay down a few pennies that the future-jobs problem is not even solvable.
Finished polishing my crystal ball (looking very nice, BTW) but I can’t seem to find anything except, “I dunno, best to cover your backside”. Ha Ha, very funny. Thanks for nothing.
There’s also another problem. Social and technological change is picking up speed — and not looking back. Will all of these STEM (now STEAM) classes solve the problem? Definite maybe on that.
Right now I’m spending 40 min per week with some 50 5th graders, here in my hometown. They are following along with the videos (in the ‘courses’ tab). It’s kind of like learning piano. You see the teacher once/week and then practice (maybe?) during the week — you know that drill.
Seems to work, but even after the second week the kids are all on different videos. Gee, big surprise, they are all different (unique, is a much better word).
What they are learning is great stuff (he says modestly), but the main thing is that they are “learning how to learn — on their own”. They are learning the SCRATCH syntax (it’s very hard and they stumble around because they do not know ANY computer language — they’re like babies learning to speak, walk, etc.).
If we can never know what that 15 to 20-year future holds, don’t we have to use the “baby approach”? Learn the world’s “syntax” and become learners — for life? Do I hear a “YES”?