A lot of ink gets spilt on the intractable nature of Indian labor laws. Indian labor laws are considered by many as a retarding factor of growth. Inflexible labor market regulations are believed to be hindering large-scale investments, technology absorption, productivity enhancement and high employment growth in Indian manufacturing. Inflexible labour market could also be one of the reasons for the share of manufacturing in Gross Domestic Capital Formation hovering around 30% since 1970s, and growth in share of services sector in GDCF from 39% in 1970 to 51% in 2010.
However, what if, we have reached a point where it doesn’t matter anymore?
Indian labor laws exist to protect current employees. But what if entire new production lines are setup without having to employ labor at all?
What if, instead of this:
We start with this:
Industrial robot manufacturers are reporting between 18% and 25% growth in orders and revenue year on year.
Even newspaper articles are being written by algos. An algorithm called Quakebot is programmed to extract relevant data from USGS earthquake reports and plug it into a pre-written template. The story goes into the LAT’s content management system, where it awaits review and publication by a human editor. Narrative Science, a company that trains computers to write news stories, predicts that in the next 15 years, 90% of news would be written by computers.
Connecting the dots, we can imagine a future where our existing idea of a “corporation” might appear quaint.
So why can’t they be completely automated? I mean that literally. Could we have software that carries out all those functions?
The CEO of an automatic corporation will be a devops engineer: fixing software bugs, writing “features” (i.e. new ways for the corporation to behave), watching performance dashboards (imagine all the pretty graphs!), and providing some vestige of human input to tune parameters used by the software. Eventually they can take their hands off the steering wheel, having configured everything to run on auto-pilot, and set up alerts to page their phone if something really goes wrong.
Why bother our netas and babus for reforms when we can directly leapfrog in to the “Automatic Corporation”?
- The First News Report on the L.A. Earthquake Was Written by a Robot
- The Automatic Corporation
- The economic impact of the robotic revolution
- Robots, China and demographics
- IFR: Robots Improve Manufacturing Success & Create Jobs
- The excuse of rigid labour laws
- Comparison of Labour Laws
- Can an Algorithm Write a Better News Story Than a Human Reporter?