Marcel Bullinga and the Robot Economy

Futurist Marcel Bullinga tells us about our future with Robots

Marcel Bullinga is futurist based in Netherland. At the early stage of internet he had 2 out of 20 first websites in Netherland. He is now passionate about the impact of robots on our future.

It’s Fun to be a Futurist these Days!

it’s fun to be a futurist, because you’re thinking about the future. One thing about the future is, it’s still open. Right now, basically, the world is a mess. Still, we have to discover the small seeds of hope that might grow into bigger seeds of hope. Might grow into newer more sustainable business models, which will shape the future in a way that it didn’t shape the world we live in now. There’s hope for a better world, in short, and I try to do discovery and to pinpoint different seeds of the future.

Technology is Going to Empower us

The seeds of hope are that technology is going to empower us. Individual citizens and individual professionals with lots and lots and lots of tools to have more control over our own world. The way we generate energy. The way we work. The way we build our houses. One of the fun things about the future is that everything is going to be very cheap. Not talking about inflation or deflation, but things are getting smaller. They are getting higher quality of the way they are made and they are going to be cheaper. From energy sources to lots of robots to, you name it, and it will be cheaper and faster, which means that lots of tools that before only government, big multinationals, could afford to have, like data mining tools or discovering, handling expensive energy sources. Well, they now come into our reach of individual people and I think this do it yourself future is one of the most promising things about the future.

Any Seed of Danger in this Future?

There are so many seeds of danger it’s impossible to name them all. I try to stay away from the seeds of danger. I try to focus on the seeds of hope, because people can name the seeds of danger themselves. They’re probably right in it. What I do try to do is tell them where our business models are going wrong and the way we do business. How can we have a sustainable way of doing business with respect to human rights and the planet?

Much of our  world is not sustainable, is not ethical, so I think we should strive towards ethical means of doing business. It’s not a seed of hope.

A Robot Economy

Technology is only the starting point. We will have a robot economy. And a algorithmic economy. We’re going to have a very cheap do it yourself robot and algorithm artificial intelligence economy. Imagine what it is like to live in that future and to imagine the tools you’ll have to lead your own life with less of a government than we have now. Technology is only the starting point, but it’s really interesting how does it affect human relationship. Go with the fact, how many times you go to the dentist or to your medical practitioner. Maybe won’t see them ever anymore. That’s the kind of questions I like to raise in my questions about the future.

The Future of Jobs

Numerous research on how many percentage of jobs they will make disappear from 47% to 97 depending on your profession and depending on the country where you live in. On the other hand, we also have many, many more jobs of the future and those are the jobs the robots leave for us.

What are the Jobs of the Future?

Anything the robot can’t do or cannot really do as good as humans can do. It’s not about higher education, lower education, because for example, an anesthesist is going to replaced by robots, which will do the same thing much, much cheaper. It’s part of the cheap economy. And it happens that this person is one of the highest paid professionals…

Your advice to a 20 years old

Start studying artificial intelligence and creates the robots! Be in personal relationships. Motivational stuff. Leadership. Innovation itself, but basically, everything that is routine, administrative, controlling-like, will disappear. All these jobs will be taken over by robots. I think lots of new jobs will be created in the really, truly human sphere. I want to talk to you about the leadership scene. The innovation itself and there will be lots of work in that branch.

About a General Universal Basic Income?

I don’t think a general universal basic income will be part of that future. We can’t afford it. It costs too much money. It’s totally impossible. It will increase your taxes by, I don’t know, 10%, 15, 50, 100.

But there is a fun thing about it, because 20 years ago I edited a newsletter about the basic income. I believed in it 20 years ago. I was thinking it’s amazing, it’s paradise. I would want to have a basic income myself. It’s still paradise-like, but I didn’t think at that time, who’s going to pay for it? But your neighbor is going to pay for it. But once your neighbor is going to pay for me, then maybe sometime your neighbor thinks, “Well, I don’t like the idea either. I want a basic income myself.” It’s a never-ending loop which will increase taxes by incredible amounts and which will increase the power of government by immense factors and I don’t think it’s a good thing. Apart from the fact that it will probably disrupt every system or network or web, social web that we have created around working.

Be Happy about Robots Stealing your Job!

Robots will steal away your job and be proud and happy of it because it’ll also allow you these robots, if you hire a robot or buy a robot, then your labor productivity will increase. A robot is not your enemy. He’s your companion or probably it will be a bunch of robots…

You can check Marcel Bullinga at Future Check

Watch the interview

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