Competing With Blue Collar Robots

Lots of new jobs are coming; maids, home health care workers, food service workers, retail salespeople and custodians are all needed. But will those jobs be filled by people - or blue collar robots?

By 2017, about 225,000 more maids, home health care workers, food service workers, retail salespeople and custodians are likely to be needed, making them among the fastest-growing jobs. But with wages around $10 per hour, it's hard to find good candidates.

It might get even harder. These aforementioned jobs will account for nearly 1 million of the 2.4 million new, low-skill jobs expected to be added in the U.S. by 2017, according to a USA TODAY analysis of jobs data from Economic Modeling Specialists Intl. (EMSI) and CareerBuilder.

But advances in technology mean such workers might be replaced by robots like HERB, the "Home-Exploring Robot Butler" under development at Carnegie-Mellon. HERB is learning to retrieve and deliver objects, prepare simple meals and empty a grocery bag.


(HERB Home Exploring Robot Butler)

"This is a demo to give you an idea of all the algorithms that are built in. We're interested in building the fundamental algorithms of perception and motion planning... We're motivated by tasks that can be performed in the home, to help people, particularly the elderly and the disabled...

HERB reminds me of the blue collar robot from Harry Harrison's 1956 short story The Velvet Glove. This highly adaptable robot had an additional feature that might concern humans looking for work today - it could autonomously seek work.

Jon Venex fitted the key into the hotel room door. He had asked for a large room, the largest in the hotel and had paid the desk clerk extra for it... The room was bigger than he expected - fully three feet wide by five feet long...

There was the usual adjustable hook on the back wall. He slipped it through the recessed ring in the back of his neck and kicked himself up until his feet hung free of the floor. His legs relaxed with a rattle as he cut off all power below his waist.

The overworked leg motor would have to cool down before he could work on it, plenty of time to skim through the newspaper. With the chronic worry of the unemployed, he snapped it open to the want ads and ran his eye down the Help Wanted - Robot column...

Via MyCentralJersey and 2045.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 11/4/2014)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Robotics ")

Pipefish Robot Checks Pipes Cheap
Just like capsule endoscopy, but for bigger pipes. That go underground.

Robot Only Faster, Not Better, At Recycling
'Whenever a robot finds something it can't identify straight off... it puts whatever it is in the hopper outside your window.' - Harry Harrison, 1956.

Do We Really Want Backflipping Robots?
Also includes wonderful blooper reel.

Cassie 'Halfbot' Best Half (Lower) Of Humanoid Robot
We can always make it limp along if it gets threatening.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Made In Space To Manufacture Optical Fiber In Orbit
'Mass-produced only in the orbiting factories...'

Dune Fans! Power Your Devices With Sweaty Shirts
Yet another power source from humans.

Orwell's Memory Hole Looms Larger Thanks To Nvidia
'All history was a palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary.'

Pipefish Robot Checks Pipes Cheap
Just like capsule endoscopy, but for bigger pipes. That go underground.

Nifty New SDS Space Debris Sensor For ISS
'Their radars... could easily pinpoint the debris of the early Space Age.'

NanoRacks Space Station Module Concept Validated
Space junk into space architecture.

Nuclear Drones Could Fly For Years
'I sent my eyes on their rounds and tended my gallery of one hundred-thirty changing pictures...'

SciFiQ Science Fiction Writing Aid
'Books were just a commodity that had to be produced, like jam or bootlaces.'

Robot Only Faster, Not Better, At Recycling
'Whenever a robot finds something it can't identify straight off... it puts whatever it is in the hopper outside your window.'

Poland Starts With 1000 Warmate 'Suicide Drones'
'Royal Security had told the pods to electrocute you or blast you into chum.'

Dream Of Building Your Own Rocket?
Fiorello Bodoni, you inspire all of us.

Zero Mass 'Vaporators' Pull Drinking Water From The Air
Did you think of Star Wars?

Elon Musk Fears A 'Fleet-Wide Hack' Of Autonomous Vehicles
'Khan grinned. 'It's alive! Bu-wahhahahah!''

China Melts Tibetan Permafrost To Plant Forest
'Can you give us a microwave spotlight?'

iFlytek Doctor Robot First To Pass Medical Exams
Doctor shortage? No problem, we'll just use the autodoc.

Slaughterbot AI KIller Quadcopter Drones
'The real border was defended by... a swarm of quasi-independent aerostats.'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.