Will the robot take my job? – ChatGPT, the history of AI and the worker

May 1, 2023
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Will the robot take my job? – ChatGPT, the history of AI and the worker

"What the working man sells is not directly his labour, but his labouring power, the temporary disposal of which he makes over to the capitalist." - Karl Marx, Wage-Labour and Capital/Value, Price and Profit (1848)


Artificial Intelligence is a prevalent topic at the moment. art, finance, and the law; Artificial Intelligence is filtering through all the industries, and everyone has their take on it - from a professional stance, to how this affects the very fabric of our being - It's about time we consider the effects of AI on society and labour.

 I think a lot of us have some sort of understanding of how it all works, but let’s have a look at where we have come from, and where we are going:

Artificial intelligence is defined as the theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks usually requiring human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages.

AI vs Humans - Who's going to win? (Photo: Jem Sahagun)


With the groundwork laid in 1951, British computer scientist Christopher Strachey wrote the first AI program. On a Ferranti Mark I computer at the University of Manchester, Strachey's program learned how to play a complete game of checkers by the summer of 1952.


A couple of years ago, during the lonelier parts of the pandemic, I downloaded an AI chatbot to develop a relationship with you through conversations and learning about you and your interests like a friend would. Eventually, it would develop a more familial relationship. As much as it was fun to test out, the very un-human-like response was why I eventually uninstalled the app, even if there were no noticeable technical errors. Even if I couldn't leave the house, it's not like an AI could give me the social interaction I craved.


ChatGPT is on everyone's mind right now. Developed by the company Open AI in 2022, this AI is one of the most significant learning models in the history of the discipline. And it's one of the first to gain such popularity with the public.


.. But this leads to many questions about our humanity - what can it do for us in the end? What are the limitations? Is it going to shape our future?


And the one question that has been bothering me - what is to become of the worker?


Buzzfeed, a news and entertainment site popular in the early 2010s, silently posted around 40 travel articles written by the most famous AI - Chat GPT. 


Do you think an AI could write this blog?


AI could very well replace us all but let's be honest about it - it's not like we are dealing with sentient beings, the robots aren't 'taking over' (yet), and this isn't a 1980sprediction about flying cars and talking maid bots - society still exists, our current hegemonic view can only think about replacing humans with robots because of the very nature of labour.


More than just computers, a pot plant would replace you if your higher-ups felt that it could perform a task more to their liking.

Being open to AI is essential. You could be using technology to enhance your career, find new passions and find a path true to yourself. 

It's not always a bad thing to be replaced by technology. Theoretically, this should allow you to grow into a career that's perhaps more your speed. 

 If this were a world that valued humans first, we would quickly find solutions. But that's only if companies and governments are equipped for mass lay-offs and new directions of job creation.

And your rights as a worker? Our current laws will indeed have to change, considering how countries like Italy and Cuba have already banned the programme, citing concerns for citizens 'privacy. 


Let's see where this goes -being open to this shift is crucial, but let's not forget to question and value the human workers first.