Our Changing Attitude Toward Robots

How fast we change! Back in the early Nineties, in Silicon Valley – I worked for the last American robotic company. The Japanese were quickly putting us out of the robotic business – because they made better robots.

As a new employee, I took a quick look at what this company was doing. They had a little assembly line where they made their own robots. But they could not be made larger or smaller – there was one size only. This was human-sized, so it could easily take over from humans. Their hardware future was secure – if limited. But their software as a disaster. And without that, they had no future at all.

I didn’t last long at that company – I was fired because I was critical of them. And they went out of business a few years later. But their attitude towards robotics has remained with me – they were worried about putting people out of work. Really!

This is not the attitude of Robotic companies anymore (many of whom are in America, because of its advanced software capabilities) they are hard at work putting people out of work – and don’t mind saying so!

People are seen as a business expense – that companies want to get rid of.


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