1. First human support robot trial
Here is a groundbreaking event in the history of Robots, the first human support robot, built by Toyota, trial has been completed. The first real step towards a robot helper in every home.
The HSR trial that Toyota just completed in North America was run with U.S. war vet Romy Camargo, who suffered injuries in Afghanistan during his service that left him paralyzed below the neck. The robot is a wheeled affair with visual sensors and an articulating arm appendage, and can assist Camargo and his family by performing simple tasks around the house like opening and closing doors, as well as fetching water bottles and other objects. - Tech Crunch
Side note: the Toyota representative in the video below, says that Toyota is a car company but they want to help people be more mobile (And THAT my friends, is how you position a company in an continuous disruptive environment)
2. WHat Jobs will be around in 20 years
With just about everyone shouting, 'the robots are coming, the robots are coming' and claims of job loss flying around that range from 30% to 50% in the next twenty years, how do we think about jobs, which type of jobs will be safe (well, safer) that others?
An article with some valid points and some invalid, the way the writer is dividing up the type of jobs is interesting, although maybe a tad short sighted:
1. Creative jobs ( true, BUT robots are already creating original works of art, and have beaten human Creative Directors in making TV ads)
2. Occupations that involve building complex relationships with people: nurses, for example, or a business role that requires you to build close relationships with clients (we are venturing into the area of the 'soul' here, BUT this is one is a timebomb I suspect... just wait until a robot passes the Turing test)
3. The third area is jobs that are highly unpredictable – for example, if you’re a plumber who is called out to emergencies in different locations. (complete nonsense in my opinion, unpredictability is just more variables that have to learnt.)
Read the full article here on the Gaurdian
3. The most , future-proof tertiary educator in US, only teaches one program.
,That's right. ONE program, actually called 'The Program'. largely unchanged from 50 years ago. St. John’s College, founded in 1696, teached every student four years of literature, language, philosophy, political science and economy, and math. Three years of laboratory science, and two of music. That’s it. No contemporary social studies. No accounting. No computer classes. No distinct majors or minors.
In a world where just about everyone is shouting about learning to code, and building robots, St John's is sticking with the classics, BUT what they are doing in actual fact, and in my opinion the most important future proofing anyone can do, is teaching students how learn, and how to think. The two most valuable, and most neglected of late, skills of humankind.
Just thinking on my educational journey, I started out studying fashion design, which I am eternally grateful for. It taught me my most valuable skill which is to think conceptually, and critically. A skill which has kept my career(s), moving forward. Coupled with learning to learn, these make a powerful combo.
If, like me, you are thinking about your childrens' future education, and your own career this article is a worthwhile read.
This is by me, Pierre, each week I post three things that grabbed my attention, and that I like. You can also sign up for the newsletter version here