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机器人革命中我如何成为牺牲品
I become a victim of robot war

 
自机器可以处理重复性工作的那一刻起,人类劳动力就面临被机器取代的风险,并使许多人类工作岗位受到威胁。因此,自动化在日益重塑全球经济格局的同时,亦加剧了裁员和技术性职业流失。自从互联网的问世以来,机器人便向人类的传统职场宣战,使其不断遭到自动化革命的袭击。加拿大数以百万计的就业岗位在这场革命中被摧毁,而其中有许多并非属于重复性低薪工作。

From the moment that machines could handle repetitive work, it threatens to replace human labor, leaving human jobs obsolete. As a result, automation has increasingly reshaped the global economy, fueling job displacement and technology unemployment. Ever since the interception of the internet, man-made machines have increasingly invaded traditional workplace, waging a war against the planet.  It has destroyed millions of jobs in Canada, many of which are not restricted to repetitive, low-wage jobs. 


我就是这场革命的早期牺牲者之一。在拿到加拿大大学的理科学位后,我在上世纪90年代曾在数家公司担任电脑编程工作。但是,千禧年之初的互联网泡沫吞噬了高科技产业的大量资金,许多公司因此被迫关停和进行裁员。很不幸但又非常巧合的是,我工作的两家公司都在互联网泡沫的浪潮中关门大吉,使包括我的工作在内的数千个就业岗位全部化为乌有。

I was one of the early casualties in this war. Armed with a science degree from a Canadian university, I had taken a computer software engineer job with different companies in the 1990s. But the collapse of dot.com bubble in the beginning of the new millennium has wiped out large amount of capitals from the high-tech industry, forcing companies to shut down and lay off employees. Unfortunately, and coincidentally, both the companies I worked for were evaporated during the bubble burst, destroying thousands of jobs – including mine. 


但是,敌人在这场战争中却未停止攻击的步伐,并将我下一个职业作为其攻击目标。在我担任本报记者数年后,借助互联网的强大威力而滋生的网络媒体快速发展,对传统媒体行业造成了猛烈冲击。日新月异的社交媒体,不断壮大的互联网搜索引擎服务和无所不在的网站抢走了大量广告收入,直接威胁传统媒体行业的每一工作岗位。虽然本报以及我的工作在这场来势汹汹的科技革命中得以幸免于难,但我们的许多竞争对手都已被迫关门,被迫撤离了这个夕阳行业。

But the enemy in this war had continued its mission to attack, putting my next job in its crosshair.  A few years after I taking a job as a journalist, working for this newspaper, the media industry was hard hit by the growing new digital media created by the powerful internet.  The rising social media, the internet search engine and the omnipresent websites has looted a big chunk of advertising revenue, threatening every job in the traditional media industry. While the aggressive technology has spared this paper and my job, it has forced many of our competitors to shut down, backing away from the sunset industry altogether.


在战役中捷报频传的机器人越战越勇,势将对手置于死地。随着人工智能的迅猛发展,高科技的威胁触及人类行业的所有工作岗位,并导致史无前例的大规模减员。除了取代制造业工作,功能强大的机器人还可以完成驾驶汽车、填写报税表和提供银行服务等各项工作。

Claiming victories one after another, the machine has only become more aggressive towards the defeated. Armed with artificial intelligence, technology has continued to grow in power, threatening to clash with human jobs across all industries and causing mass casualties in unprecedented scale. Apart from performing manufacturing jobs, the powerful robots will do everything from driving your cars to filing your tax returns to providing banking services.


随着大量快速崛起的FinTech巨头猛烈冲击金融领域,银行业也成为机器人进攻的最主要目标之一。凭借自动化银行服务的优势,机器人对传统银行业发起电子骚扰攻击,全盘获取银行零售服务的替代功能,并势将银行下属分行分崩瓦解。银行一线员工的角色也因此不断退化,全世界已有数千名银行柜员失去了工作。据CNN报道,自2007年以来美国银行分行的柜员数量已经减少了15%。约有三分之二的银行工作岗位在近年内可被自动化取代,银行业裁员风潮还会进一步加剧。

Banking sector is one of the biggest targets of the robots, as the fast paced FinTech industry collides with the finance world. Equipped with automation banking edge, it has caused digital disruptions to traditional banking, providing a genuine alternative to retail services and leaving brick and mortar branches in jeopardy. It has diminished the roles of the frontline bank employees, eliminating thousands of tellers’ jobs worldwide. According to CNN, the number of US branch tellers has declined by 15% since 2007, and the job losses will only accelerate, with two thirds of bank employees’ to be replaced by automation in the next few years. 

 
随着全球500亿台设备联接上网,在机器人革命的下一波浪潮中,将有80%的客户互动功能将在没有人工干预的情况下实现。届时中国将有高达77%的就业岗位面临被机器人或人工智能取代的风险,而加拿大经济也难免会受到这场席卷全球劳动力市场的颠覆性冲击。瑞尔森大学的一份报告指出,加国约有42%的工人在未来10到20年内会受到自动化浪潮的威胁。

In the next wave of this robot war, with 50 billion of devices connected to the internet, about 80% of customer interactions will be built without human interaction. A full 77% of jobs in China will be vulnerable to robots or AI replacement, and the Canadian economy is hardly immune to colossal forces   sweeping through the labour markets. According a report from Ryerson University, nearly 42 per cent of Canadian workers are at “high risk” of being affected by automation over the next one to two decades.


不幸的是,这场机器人战争似乎要将我的职业生涯置赶尽杀绝,让我这碗“记者”饭也吃不成。证据表明写作对于人工智能而言只是小菜一碟,目前许多公司都已经开始使用智能软件撰写商业报告。据报道,人工智能现在每季度可撰写多达3000份报告。

Unfortunately, it seems this robot war has determined to chase my career to the grave, threatening to take away my current job as a journalist. It turns out writing is not a problem for AI, and many companies have started to use intelligence software to write business report.  Up to 3000 reports are reportedly being written by AI every quarter. 


但我对此并不担心。科技是一把双刃剑,它可奴役人类,也可解放人类;它可让人类毁灭,也可以给我们带来新生。我相信在科技重塑的新经济模式下,这场所有机器人革命的所有受害者都将会以某种方式得到补偿。

But I am not worried. Technology is a double-edged sword, with the ability to enslave but to liberate, and the power to destruct but to revive. I believe that all of us victims of the war will be compensated under the new economic model that the technology has helped reshape – in one way or another. 
 

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