The Psychological Necessity of Robots

Robots will not just help our efficiency, they’ll help us morally and psychologically! Many question whether the influx of millions of robots into the workforce will be good or bad. Will they usher in a new era of a globally high standard of living, or will they permanently take too many jobs, creating a dystopia? This article explains not only why robots will help humanity but how they’re psychologically necessary.

Instead of fearing job loss, we should fear the slow vegetation of the brain and body instead. Consider an assembly line worker. They are trained to do 1 thing over and over. There’s no thinking needed, just moving one’s body in the same routine for years. These jobs deaden the souls of the very workers, even leading to strikes, due to sheer boredom. This is not what the human body was made for either, as these workers are more prone to arthritis, vision loss, and back/joint pain. Is this what we should be fighting for, or should we believe in something greater?

People can only optimize their jobs for so long. There are some people who love being janitors because there are multiple ways to optimize their work: techniques to clean faster or better; but, at some point, optimization can’t be taken too much further. Many companies are finding that robots are better than janitors because they don’t have a high salary, and in a capitalist market, the better solution always wins. At this point, there is nothing the janitor can do to get his job back, albeit convincing the whole country that we should go with a slower, less efficient solution. Even if they do this, being a janitor just simply isn’t going to be as fun as something that requires innovation.

Humans were made to solve problems. There is nothing capable of solving complex challenges like the brain. Even AI and neural networks need to have creators to change reward functions and tune hyperparameters, and yet they are limited to merely 1 domain at a time. There are currently so many human rights issues that need people, not robots: world poverty, political turmoil, mass depression, etc. Ever wonder why children prefer video games to school? Modern school can be atrociously boring because they have us memorize solutions outside of the context of problems, but video games have us learn solutions by solving problems. Most students can’t remember the 50 chemical equations on their last week’s quiz but will remember many of the worlds, bosses, and techniques used to beat Super Mario. This is because true learning is about correlating emotions to a problem. Our RAM is limited, just like a computer, and this is why we don’t remember almost anything from our middle or high school days.

This shows us that robots are psychologically necessary for the human brain. Studies have shown a lack of stimulating experience leads to violence, and we are living in a fairly violent world. We need robots to take the dull work from us to free our time to do more creative activities, such as solving world problems and exploring space. We literally need to solve problems or else the world will get more violent. In fact, many religions, especially mine, tout the importance of helping others. We are not created to just ingest Facebook and Instagram stories or take fancy vacations: we’re created to help others.

For those fearing mass job loss, it’s impossible while there are still problems to solve. For all of history, people feared job loss, whether it was due to a new king or a new scientific revolution. After the Industrial Revolution, people didn’t stop working just because they couldn’t farm. The world shifted from sustenance living to efficiency. If robots take most routine jobs, the same thing would happen: people will again get re-educated to work on higher-level problems. If the robotics integration happens slow enough (which it is), there won’t be a moment of mass unemployment. Some say that this time will be different, but we are like 1 grain of sand in a giant cosmos. We know that capitalism is the final rule, and when we try to explore new planets, sending a human there will always be cheaper than creating a robot, so that’s what will happen.

The safety of children will always be greater than the security of jobs. Finally, the largest psychological reason for robots is that there are children dying due to malnutrition and lack of affordable housing. The feeling the human heart gets from seeing these innocent die will always be greater than the fear of low/middle-class families in first-world countries losing a job for a few months. The one common thing I see when someone tells me they dislike robots is that they aren’t working on or even know of a solution to deal with the world’s problems. We in the first world should not turn a blind eye to the needs of the dying just because we may lose our jobs (I John 3:17). We must do anything necessary to ensure they stay alive and live a long, meaningful life.

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In summary, although some fear job loss, we need solutions to the world’s problems. Routine jobs wear away at the will of their workers because humans were made to problem solve. Without robots, violence may grow and children may keep dying in mass, but we live in a large universe where there will always be more jobs.