Smart Industry 1/2019


Smart Industry 1/2019 - The IoT Business Magazine - powered by Avnet Silica

No Interface, asks some great questions

that triggered me regarding

how far we are extending the focus

of touch points rather than the logic

behind those touch points.” [Krishna

currently works at Google on design


“A genuinely intelligent environment

doesn’t need me to interact with it all

the time. The fridge should predict

the things I need.

“Then there is my connected toothbrush.

When I was in the US, I said

maybe I should upgrade my toothbrush

– and I found this connected

toothbrush. It can map your face in

real time. It starts Bluetooth and gains

access to a camera. Why? Because

Oral-B wants to see me brush my

teeth. What is the value of that? What

is the value to me? That is the part we

are missing. We have no idea of the

value, not just of me as an individual

but the value that my own existence

is creating.

“I think that is the point we are missing

when we are striving to connect

everything together. Instead of liberating

technology, we are creating jails

for ourselves.

“I don’t believe technology should replace

humans and I don’t believe we

should compete against technology.

We should find a common ground to

work together to find the next stage

of evolution – a mutual evolution of

technology and humans.

“Our discussions are not around these

things. I’ve come to the point where I

think we can summarize it in two sentences:

• We live in a world where we can

search and google but no one

knows what to search for.

• We live in a world where we can operate

everything but no one knows

how anything works.

“They are talking about folding

phones as the next thing – but what

is the value of a thousand devices in

someone’s pocket? If we are talking

about driving ahead and improving

things, we need to be driving and improving

things with a focus. It doesn’t

make sense to have ‘smart’ before everything.

We are focusing just on technology

rather than utility.”

Labor Does Not Mean Luddite

Aida Ponce Del Castillo

Aida Ponce Del Castillo is a lawyer with

a European doctorate in law, which

highlighted regulatory issues of human

genetics, and a master’s degree in bioethics.

She works within the European

Trade Union Institute’s Foresight Unit

where she focuses on strategic foresight

and on the legal, ethical, social,

and regulatory issues of emerging technologies

such as IoT, which she views as

an enabler for further automation:

“When people say more jobs will be

created [by new technologies and IoT],

I would like to see hints of where. So far,

we don’t have any idea where people

will be needed. Everybody’s 100 percent

agreeing that digital skills will be

needed, but no one is able to really decipher

which ones, or how to prepare.

“Obviously, automation has increased

as a buzzword over the last two or

three years but, so far, automation and

IoT has only had real impact in a few

visible sectors like IT, the automotive

industry, and other types of manufacturing.

“We should perhaps look at other sectors

where IoT or automation is not yet

as visible; the service sector for example.

Some people make the assumption

that this is now a threat to whitecollar

workers more than blue – or it

could be the opposite.

“However, unemployment or underemployment

seems likely to become

an issue. OECD [The Organisation for

Economic Co-operation and Development]

and some universities have

forecast that jobs will be lost, but the

studies are not consistent so we can’t

draw firm conclusions – but we can see

how jobs are being removed, like at supermarkets.

“I’ve talked to blue- and white-collar

workers and I can see that their perceptions

are mixed. For both, we need

to look at the consequences to the

Aida Ponce

Everybody’s 100

percent agreeing

that digital skills

will be needed,

but no one is able

to really decipher

which ones, or how

to prepare.

Look back

over the

past, with

its changing


that rose

and fell,

and you

can foresee

the future,


Marcus Aurelius,

Roman emperor and


workers. It depends, in part, on the

computer literacy of the worker or the

individual in terms of how they use a

computer and how they relate to the

Internet – it is not simply a divide between

blue-collar and white.

“Looking at services more concretely,

where automation has great potential,

there is fear that more of those jobs will

be lost and there is a concern about the

next generation and whether there will

be job opportunities for them.

“In fact, we can’t really predict what

jobs the children in the next generation

will have.

“Deskilling is another consequence of

automation; namely, the decreased

opportunities for people to learn skills

or to maintain any professional knowledge.

The skills and knowledge that

have defined a person will be lost to

automation. This is why many people

are opting for reskilling or upskilling.

“With these technologies there could

also be different types of risk related

to computing or cybersecurity where

there would be loss of autonomy and

control by humans, relying more on

platforms or algorithms to make decisions.

In fact, algorithm-based decision-making

is one of the bigger consequences

of automation.

“The same happens for nurses and

the health professions. They are increasingly

relating to the files and the

computer, in addition to directly taking

care of patients. Nurses, in particular,

are being controlled by aspects of IoT

in terms of how often they wash their

uniform, because a chip is integrated

into it. In effect, nurses are being subjected

to surveillance and their shift assignments

are often algorithm-based,

too. Or perhaps it could be someone

driving a truck and they are feeling the

impact of an algorithm telling them

where to go.

“Ultimately, there’s no division in the

impact; so, for labor unions, it’s one

of the top priorities for discussion. Of

course, people have a problem with

wages first and then their concerns

about digitization and automation.

Really, I don’t think they want to rebel

against it. They want to take part in it

and shape the trend instead of making

a revolution against it.”


More magazines by this user
Similar magazines