Opinion: How assistive robots will transform the workplace and elderly care

By Dr Antonio Espingardeiro, member of the IEEE

Robots can bring significant benefits to the workplace, positively impacting productivity, efficiency and quality.

There are challenges to realising these benefits – not least the complex subject of the degree and quality of human interaction that we want or need robots to deliver.

However, robotics offers tremendous scope for helping humanity, so the field will continue to develop the advanced technologies that make it possible.  Continue reading Opinion: How assistive robots will transform the workplace and elderly care

Americans split on impact of automation in the workplace

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Picture credit: Hitachi via IEEE

Automation in the workplace is a polarizing issue for Americans, according to the results of a new American Staffing Association Workforce Monitor survey conducted online by Harris Poll.

About equal percentages of respondents say that automation – for example, robots or artificial intelligence – will be a good or a bad thing for the future world of work.

Specifically, 34 per cent of Americans say automation will be a positive development for the workforce in the next 10 years or more—compared with 31% who say it will be negative. A plurality (35 per cent) are neutral on the matter or just don’t know.  Continue reading Americans split on impact of automation in the workplace

BMW shows off its smart factory technologies at its plants worldwide

bmw worker with collaborative robot

Collaborative robots, smart glasses, exoskeletons and innovative work gloves are among the tech being integrated at plants across the group’s worldwide operations 

German automaker BMW has been providing a glimpse into the advanced manufacturing technologies at several of its factories – in Germany and the US. 

The company says it has been harnessing the potential of innovative automation and flexible assistance systems in production.

In doing so, BMW says it has modernized the work environment and increased the efficiency of its workforce.  Continue reading BMW shows off its smart factory technologies at its plants worldwide

Self-awareness is the key to career survival as jobs get automated, says business psychologist

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Automation is about to do away with millions of jobs. A business psychologist claims he has at least some of the answers 

The good news is that the job you hate is about to be automated. The bad news is that you’re about to be out of work.

“Jobs that cannot be automated are on a very short list,” says Robert Pasick, PhD, an executive coach and organizational psychologist who also teaches at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business. “If you are afraid to leave the job you hate, it may be about to leave you.”

Journalists fear computers that are already writing news stories. Truck drivers fear self-driving trucks, already carrying freight in controlled experiments. Accounting, lawyering, health care, package delivery, even Uber driver jobs are on the verge of automation.  Continue reading Self-awareness is the key to career survival as jobs get automated, says business psychologist

Daimler develops ways for industrial robots and factories to save energy under Areus project

Saving energy has been a serious preoccupation of many industrial companies for many years, but especially in recent years with prices of fuel fluctuating and public concern about the environment growing. 

In the auto manufacturing sector, which buys the most number of industrial robots and uses vast amounts of energy, companies such as Kuka have been looking to make their automation systems more energy efficient.

Now, in the European Union, a project called Automation and Robotics for European Sustainable Manufacturing, or Areus, says it has developed the components of an energy-efficient automobile production system of the future.  Continue reading Daimler develops ways for industrial robots and factories to save energy under Areus project

The future of work: Generation Z against the Machine

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Stephen Parker, CEO of digital engagement specialist Parker Software, explains how businesses can use technology to enhance jobs rather than replace them

There is a persistent myth that the rise of automation, robotics and software is a recipe for disaster. Many people worry that technological innovation will lead to the demise of human jobs, otherwise known as structural unemployment.

These claims are dangerous for “generation Z”, creating an uneasy atmosphere of automation anxiety and paranoia over job security.

Many of us have heard about the idea of automation anxiety, which is the fear that robotics and software will one day come to replace humans in the workforce.  Continue reading The future of work: Generation Z against the Machine

Epic infographic from TradeMachines confirms global takeover by robots

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Infographic: How industrial robots will improve our lives 

Vintage and pre-owned industrial equipment supplier TradeMachines has produced a massive infographic which provides insights about the impacts of industrial robots on our work life. 

Industry 4.0 marks the dawn of a new era for robotics, which are starting to be an integral part of factories, all over the world.

In recent years, robots sales have exponentially increased: in 2015, 1.8 million industrial robots were in operation; that is more than the whole population of Philadelphia.  Continue reading Epic infographic from TradeMachines confirms global takeover by robots