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“The Simple Economics of Machine Intelligence”

This piece in the Harvard Business Review has a four-part argument, with a cautiously optimistic conclusion:
  1. Machine intelligence is essentially about prediction
  2. As the price of such prediction drops, demand for it will go up (e.g., predicting very early-stage diseases)
  3. The ‘complement’ (in economic terms) of prediction is judgment — done by humans.
  4. Thus, demand for human judgment will also go up [e.g., decisions about medical treatment], and this is good for human employment prospects.

How should we educate, in the age of automation?

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In the Guardian, George Monbiot cites arguments that the dominant mode of education in the West may have been well-suited for an industrial age, but not for a post-industrial, increasingly automated one.

While reading, I thought of a few other institutions that have long sought to de-regiment, de-mechanize, and genuinely humanize education: the Montessori tradition, and St. John’s College.

Article: “In an age of robots, schools are teaching our children to be redundant.”

 

Aristotle: True leisure is not relaxation.

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The Noble Leisure Project” gives a clear explanation of how Aristotle’s concept of leisure — far from being mere passivity — is an activity, in which one finds one’s greatest fulfillment.  And not just any activity, but rather the activities that are the most properly human.

In general, then, the hierarchy goes something like this:

relaxation -> (for the sake of) -> work -> (for the sake of) -> leisure