A rising aspect of collaboration is the human-machine work coexistence.  A steady increase in this specific form of collaboration is also raising quite a concern: technological unemployment.  Study after study confirms people are convinced that robots will take over a lot of human jobs.  The Pew Research Centre recently released one such study (link included in this edition of recommended reading).  But collaboration with robots is also an opportunity for innovation from humans who understand that collaboration is something far more than a mere sum of parts.

Thanks to ROADMENDER readers who have suggested articles for this edition of Roadmender Recommends.


Humans and robots working in harmony at Ford Cologne factory

Used in the right way, robots they have the potential to make life much easier for humans on a production line, but most factory robots don’t have the ability to stop or subtly adjust their motion, so anyone who gets in the way is at risk of injury. Ford thinks it’s found a way around this problem, and is putting humans side-by-side with robots in its Cologne factory to validate its approach…READ ON


Collaborating with Robots. Yes, seriously.

If we are to believe an increasing number of recent headlines then we are going to see robots coming: to take our jobs. That is old news to many. But for many others it comes as a threat that we are not sure how to handle. I’d put my money on collaboration being a big part of the solution. Collaboration just got a whole lot more interesting. It is not only a human thing. It will soon become a human and robot thing. Seriously, if you thought collaborating with humans was hard, wait till you get assigned to a job that requires you to collaborate with a robot…READ ON


Public Predictions for the Future of Workforce Automation

From self-driving vehicles and semi-autonomous robots to intelligent algorithms and predictive analytic tools, machines are increasingly capable of performing a wide range of jobs that have long been human domains. A 2013 study by researchers at Oxford University posited that as many as 47% of all jobs in the United States are at risk of “computerization.” And many respondents in a recent Pew Research Center canvassing of technology experts predicted that advances in robotics and computing applications will result in a net displacement of jobs over the coming decades – with potentially profound implications for both workers and society as a whole…READ ON


Introducing the cobot: Humans and robots working together


Walking across the floor of SEW-Eurodrive’s factory in Baden-Württemberg is like moving through a time warp.  On one side, the light is dim and workers stand at long assembly lines repeating the same task over and over. On the other, a fleet of low-lying robotic trucks scoot around the shop floor, restocking restyled workstations…READ ON


Future co-working: a space where humans and robots will learn from each other?

The fear is that robots will replace humans in the workplace. But engineers at Technical University Dresden think robots and humans can collaborate – via wearable technology for humans to train robots…READ ON


Microsoft knows we will lose in robot war, argues for coexistence

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, a respected leader of one of the world’s largest and most important technology companies, speaks as if humanity lives on the cusp of science-fiction. At today’s Microsoft Build press conference, Nadella said of the not-so-distant-future, “It’s not going to be about man versus machine, it’s going to be about man with machines.” The line addresses a sincere concern held by esteemed scientists like Stephen Hawking that artificial intelligence could one day eliminate human life…READ ON


8 digital skills we must teach our children (online collaboration being one of them)

The social and economic impact of technology is widespread and accelerating. The speed and volume of information have increased exponentially. Experts are predicting that 90% of the entire population will be connected to the internet within 10 years. With the internet of things, the digital and physical worlds will soon be merged. These changes herald exciting possibilities. But they also create uncertainty. And our kids are at the centre of this dynamic change.  Children are using digital technologies and media at increasingly younger ages and for longer periods of time. They spend an average of seven hours a day in front of screens – from televisions and computers, to mobile phones and…READ ON