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No Humans for HR?

November 20, 2015

Cooper repairing TARSThe more I delve into “Interstellar,” the deeper it gets. Sure, I’m fascinated by the concept of love as a natural force like gravity, but why go there? If you’d like to read more about love being “the one thing we’re capable of perceiving that transcends dimensions of time and space,” I recommend:

No, let me set the scene. Cooper, played by Matthew McConaughey is setting some parameters on a robot named TARS. The Interstellar wiki describes TARS‘ personality as “witty, sarcastic, and humorous, traits programmed into him to make him a better suited companion.”

TARS: [as Cooper repairs him] Settings. General settings. Security settings.
TARS: Honesty, new setting: ninety-five percent.
TARS: Confirmed. Additional settings.
Cooper: Humor, seventy-five percent.
TARS: Confirmed. Self destruct sequence in T minus 10, 9…
Cooper: Let’s make that sixty percent.
TARS: Sixty percent, confirmed. Knock knock.
Cooper: You want fifty-five?

It’s a funny scene and it illustrates the concept of artificial intelligence in machines. The advancement in robotic technology in our real world has some people very concerned. A Google search of “robots taking jobs” brings up a plethora of recent news on the issue, including some citing an economist from the Bank of England predicting 95 million jobs will be lost to robots in the next 10 to 20 years… Extrapolate that out a few more years and… no more HR.

Don’t freak just yet. One of my favorite tech/business writers, Greg Satell, writing on his DigitalTonto site notes that there are many human social skills that robots are “almost comically bad at.” I highly recommend Greg’s article, and it closes on an optimistic note:

“The future belongs not to the strongest or the smartest, but those who can collaborate—with humans and machines—most effectively.”

How are your collaborative skills? Collaboration is something we focus on and highly value at Kronos. If you are a collaborative human, check us out. Oh, a high honesty setting is required, and your high humor setting is a plus.

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