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The world is a boiling pot of chaos right now. With the commencement of the present year started a series of bad events and accidents from which the world is still recovering. There were many incidents such as the Australian wildfires, the failing economies around the world, and we almost came close to a world war. But to top them all the pandemic emerged. The pandemic known as COVID-19 is the deadliest virus that humanity has encountered in the previous decade. The pandemic has affected so many lives. The direct effect has been obviously the rising number of death tolls but the more worrying and appalling effects are also being noticed. These effects include slowing the economy, changing workplace scenarios, new norms being introduced, and ban on international travel. Among all these new changes the regular worker of a company got affected in various ways. 

This is a transitioning phase for those workers too. The IT sector is expecting a major shift in the working norms post this pandemic period. Analysts are predicting some new changes in the recruitment and the work process in major industrial sectors. And most of these changes incorporate the use of AI.

Early indications show that artificial intelligence will be the dominant force in every field. Most of the far fetched reports also claim that AI is going to replace the manual workforce in the job sectors of the US. but how much water do these reports hold? Are they 100% accurate and if so then how accommodating AI will affect the manual workers in an office? Are they going to accomplish the task by going the distance hand in hand or is the AI going to replace the manual work? Let us see how artificial intelligence is going to affect people in 2021 and what is the future of AI?

Routine jobsWhile addressing the audience at Northwest University, AI guru Kai-Fu Lee said that AI is surely going to affect the jobs and we simply have to accept the fact there are going to be a lot of job displacements in the near future. The frequency of these displacements will be determined by how routine the job is? Because routine jobs are the most susceptible to be replaced by AI. imagine a warehouse where repetitive tasks include the packaging and picking up of the objects. In such cases, human labor is not very receptive, and also the cost of employing human labor in such places is very high. So AI is the better solution here. We can train robots using machine language and natural language processing to carry out such mundane tasks. 

Yes, there is an occupational hazard if things go awry or something falls out of the plan and thus we would need human supervision on such tasks but the supervision would require fewer efforts than doing the actual work. All this is focused on the output but we must also keep other aspects of AI in mind. AI needs time to learn. The learning curve of AI might be considerably smaller than other technologies but still, it needs time to adapt and overcome its present challenges. These challenges include:

  • Accuracy- the present AI systems have come a long way since their inception in the 1980s but still have a very long way to go. They are not 100% efficient and the connected and shared technology platforms such as IoT is only in its fourth phase. There are still a lot of areas that need to be covered by the AI and enhance its accuracy.

  • Acceptance- Even today most of industries believe in employing manual labor for their work to be done. AI needs to create a good image of itself in people’s minds to get worldwide acceptance and recognition. This can only be done when we minimize the risks associated with AI.

  • Risks- most people think that the rise of AI would be the doom of humanity and thus advancements in AI is a risky affair. They need to understand that not AI but unchecked and unregulated use of AI is harmful to the human race. We must develop standards for the use and development of AI. Much like the internet and shared technologies were termed as a threat to humanity, AI is also being treated in the same way by the modern-day philosophers and critics but like we have set protocols for the internet we would need to standardize the use of AI or else what they fear might come true.

Creative jobsThe thing with creative jobs is that they are not mundane and require less diligence. AI on the other hand is just a tool that lacks compassion and creativity. So while these jobs might not be directly influenced by the rise of AI but yes the future of AI does have exciting ramifications for these jobs as well. For example, if we talk about a software designer, the deployment and the compilation of the software is the logical task while designing the software or getting inspiration for its design is much more of a creative job. In such cases, AI will not design the software from scratch nor do the AI will conceive it in its entirety. The final result of how the software would look and how it would work will be a close collaboration between the designer and the AI. the designer can design the components of the software while AI would fill the remaining gaps in the functioning of the software. This way we can expect greater efficiency with higher output. ConclusionA digital counterpart for every worker might not be at our doorstep right now but it is very much a plausible notion that could become a reality in the near future. People need to understand that there is nothing to be afraid of this notion. In fact, incorporating AI will help people to enhance the quality of their work, and efficiency would increase. 
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