How do We Survive the Automation Onslaught?

Adam E. Badenhorst
2 min readDec 29, 2017

Automation is upon us. It takes full force each and every day. We have already seen it in manufacturing and logistics. That may be too far away from your context. I can appreciate that so let me draw a closer example.

Some libraries are installing RFID self-service systems. Car parks are installing self-service pay machines and access control systems. These are just examples that come to mind and they are very real.

We could have a fundamental problem where a small population are supporting the masses out of work. Whose responsibility is it to help those people get back to work?

We will see other areas become more and more automated as we go along. Now, entrepreneurship could be an option for some, perhaps those who are more privileged. What about those who are less privileged? It should be up to the Governments of different states to fund programs aimed at helping their people. Of course, this costs money and has its own opportunity cost.

The world’s economy is not fully recovered. Governments are under pressure to improve their finances. We know Europe, US and other Governments have large debts. We also know that certain economies are in general crisis take Spain, Italy, or an African economy like Zimbabwe where unemployment is terrible.

So, is the answer entrepreneurship and freelancing? Or, will there be some limit to automation?

It’s a rather difficult question to answer. We need to find an even keeled solution that provides a mix of both. It is only this mix that can help us survive automation. I wonder if there is anything else we can do.

Certainly, I believe there is a moral obligation to help our fellow human. However, we also need to take care of ourselves and our loved ones. Finally, technology needs to advance as we are inherently driven to innovate.

Will we see a true self-fulfilling prophecy of Darwin’s theory of evolution?

Key Takeaway: A new era of challenges is upon us for which we need to brace ourselves. We should take pro-active steps to re-brand ourselves and learn new skills. There is a time factor and limit to which we can achieve such an enormous re-branding. I think the sooner we get started, the better it is.

Adam E. Badenhorst

Enterpreneur. IT & Heritage Consultant disrupting industries. AI, blockchain, SaaS, ERP.