I have a recurring issue with obsessing over whether my job is secure given the massive upswing in universities and online umbrella companies promoting fabulous new courses with thousands of students learning online under the aegis of remote-control professors. It makes me think of the tide of robot replacements waiting on the horizon.
It all started when I read Farhad Manjoo’s excellent series Will Robots Steal Your Job? His “everyone thinks it won’t happen to them” argument is trickily compelling, especially since there already have been suggestions that professors could be replaced by online content. Sure, not next tomorrow, but maybe frighteningly soon.
I have two questions for you to ponder, in the light of this. First, you are in the process of choosing careers. Have you thought about whether the paths you are choosing are robot-proof? Are you going to graduate, only to find yourself vulnerable to robot replacement? Second, do you think I am about to be replaced? How do you respond to the prospect of Professor Robot?