Work – The Age of Em: Work, Love, and Life when Robots Rule the Earth by Robin Hanson
Premessa: per robot intendiamo macchine dotate di intelligenza artificiale. Probabilmente avremo a che fare con emulatori più che con robot, ovvero con macchine azionate tramite l’ upload di intelligenze umane opportunamente selezionate.
Today, successful people in very competitive jobs, professions, and industries often work a great many hours per week. This makes it plausible that selection for em productivity will produce a world of ems who are also very hard-working, even “workaholic,”
“workaholics” tend to make more money, to be male, and to focus their socializing on scheduled times such as holidays. They also tend rise early to work alone and they often use stimulants (Kemeny 2002; Currey 2013
Note:STIMOLANTI A GO-GO
Many claim that working very long hours is usually counter-productive. For example, it is said that in construction, working 60 hours a week over 2 months actually results in less output than working 40 hours a week over that period (Hanna et al. 2005; Alvanchi et al. 2012; Pozen 2012; Mullainathan and Shafir 2013
Note:MA LAVORARE TANTO RENDE DAVVERO?
the reason most workers today tend to work too many hours might be because the few most productive workers are indeed more productive when they work many hours, and ordinary people are trying to resemble these super-workers. If this is the case, then ems will work many hours because they will mostly be selected from among those few super-workers.
Note:PERCHÈ SI LAVORA TANTO?
The selection for ems who work hard and well is likely to select for a work-orientation, rather than a leisure-orientation, in em cultures. During the industrial era, an orientation to leisure has become more common, and today is more common among women, the young, and the unmarried. People with a high school education are more leisure-oriented, compared with both those with more and less education.
Note:ORIENTATI AL LAVORO O AL TEMPO LIBERO?
Leisure-oriented people are less satisfied with their job, and they feel fewer intrinsic rewards from work and more from leisure.
This all weakly suggests that ems not only work more hours, they also tend to be male, married, care less about work relations, feel more obliged to contribute to society, and gain more intrinsic reward from work and less from leisure.
Note:RITRATTINO DEL ROBOT LAVORATORE
During the industrial era, we have spent much of our increasing wealth on more pleasant working conditions, as well as on more consumption variety and on working fewer hours. Poorer and more competitive ems are likely to reverse these trends, and accept more workplace drudgery.
Note:CONDIZIONI DI LAVORO
Some ems are likely to listen to music on the job, as that increases productivity in some kinds of jobs (Fox and Embrey 1972). Such music will typically be mild, wordless, and not otherwise distracting (Kiger 1989).
Note:MUSICA SUL LAVORO
heavy use of “spurs,” who are em copies who are newly copied at the beginning of their workday, and then retire or are erased at the conclusion of their workday.
Note:CONTROFIGURE CON UN GIORNO DI VITA
In addition to saving on the cost of needing to rest from work, spurs also save on mental aging. As discussed in Chapter 4, Complexity section, em minds become less flexible and more fragile with subjective experience.
U.S. workers recently reported spending an average of 7% of their time at work “loafing,” such as via eating, socializing, or web surfing. This percentage falls when workers more fear losing their job (Burda et al. 2016). More competitive em workers loaf less.
Breaks help productivity more when they are short and frequent, when they happen in the morning relative to afternoon, and when the activities during breaks are preferred, social, work-related, and outside the office (Hunter and Wu 2015).
There is also evidence suggesting productivity gains from napping for 10 to 30 minutes one or a few times a day (Dhand and Sohal 2006).
em spurs will tend to be made from copies who just finished a nap or break, and that spurs will have an extra productivity bonus for tasks that take less than about an hour or so to complete.
Note:CHI COPIARE PER LAVORETTI BREVI
in our world the peak is near 10 in the morning in construction, during the morning for sports with complex strategies, and in the afternoon for handwriting and for sports requiring great physical efforts (Alvanchi et al. 2012; Hölzle et al. 2014; Drust et al. 2005).
Each em uses spurs created from the times of day which tend to give that em its highest productivity for the assigned task.
Note:COPIARE QUANDO SEI AL PICCO
Today only a modest degree of multitasking is productive. It seems that doing only one or two projects at a time is best (Aral et al. 2007
To avoid many social complications, spurs are likely to interact less often socially with non-spur friends and lovers. Spur social interactions instead focus on other spurs, such as spur co-workers.
Note:LA VITA SOCIALE DI UNO SPUR
The use of spurs will encourage ems to coordinate and plan activities in their head before splitting into spur copies, to summarize their work well just before ending or retiring as a spur, and to organize tasks into units that can be completed in a subjective work day, with minimal need to recall details later.
Note:IL LAVORATORE E LA SUA STRATEGIA
Spurs who end instead of retiring can help ems to deniably do things of questionable legal or moral status, if the main evidence of their actions was erased when their minds were erased. For example, a spur might try to alter some evidence of previous poor performance.
Note:LO SPUR USATO COME KILLER
Spurs that end could ensure privacy in short-term professional consulting. For example, a relationship counselor could make an isolated spur who hears about your relationship problems, offers advice to you in private, and then ends.
Spurs make it easier to convince people of things without revealing one’s sources, by proving that “you would agree with my claim if you knew what I know.”
Note:AFFIDABILITÀ E CONFIDENZE. CHI È GIÀ NELLA TOMBA È IL MIGLIOR FIDUCIARIO
For example, spur safes could let a buyer choose among several sellers based on very open disclosures of buyer and seller details and secrets inside a safe. Potential mates might become more intimate in a safe to see how well they are matched… For example, government authorities could not simply pretend to have good secret reasons for their policies; others could ask to see those reasons inside safes.
Note:ESEMPI DI SPUR FIDUCIARI
Inside a safe, an advisor explains the non-idealistic reasons why some choice is best. Outside the safe, the em just follows the advice from the safe, and does not reflect much on why that advice differs from what their idealistic beliefs might suggest.
Note:CAMERA CARITATIS: SAFE
Spurs could also be used to test for biases. Today, psychologists show common biases by randomly splitting experimental subjects into subgroups that are given different prompts… em spurs could directly demonstrate such biases in individuals, and not just in large groups. An individual could be split into different copies that are given different prompts, and then their answers could be directly compared. Ems wanting to convince an audience of their impartiality might even empower independent judges or opponents to create such “split-tests.”
Note:RINTRACCIARE I BIAS
Compared with us, ems are individually better at getting and keeping power. Humans today often compete for power, prestige, and material resources. But most of us are reluctant to compete fiercely and strategically, using all available means. It makes sense that we inherited such attitudes, because the forager world greatly punished such aggression… our habits of reluctant competition are often less adaptive in today’s rather different world, and are likely to also be less adaptive in the em world….
Note:EM PIÙ COMPETITIVI DEGLI UOMINI
In the farming and industrial eras selection effects have ensured that such aggressive competitors have been over-represented in positions of power (Pfeffer 2010).
Note:L’AGGRESSIVITÀ OGGI PAGA PIÙ DI IERI
They less often handicap themselves, such as by refusing to take a test that they might fail. That is, they don’t shy away from hard tests. They instead have stronger desires to improve themselves, and stronger beliefs that this is possible.
Note:L’ EMULATORE CI PROVA SEMPRE. VUOLE MIGLIORARSI
Power-gaining ems are also more willing and able to sell themselves. They push more to make themselves visible to superiors, they are more attentive to what their bosses want, and they develop stronger relations with those bosses.
They are more able to project self-assurance, to read others and empathize with their point of view, and to tolerate conflict. They tend more to be suspicious of potential work rivals. Such ems are more strategic and careful in choosing the details of their career paths. They more often ask for things they want, even if rejection seems likely.
Note:AUTOCONTROLLO TOLLERANZA E IPOCRISIA
Power-gaining ems are better actors, in order to convince others of their power. They are better able to pretend and play a role. They tend to act like they are succeeding, even when they are not. They tend to express anger instead of sadness or remorse. They tend to stand up straight rather than slouching, and thrust their chest and pelvis forward rather than curling in on themselves. They more often move forward and toward others, and stand closer to others, instead of turning their back or retreating. They use tall bodies and deep voices, although of course all virtual ems could also easily do this if they wish. The hand gestures of such ems are short and forceful, not long and circular. They directly look others in the eye, instead of looking down or away.
Note:MODO DI COMPORTARSI E ATTEGGIAMENTI
Their language is evocative, specific, and often filled with forceful words and visual imagery. They often use emotional language terms, refer to us-them concepts and other contrasting concept pairs, pause for emphasis, and explicitly enumerate how many points they will make. Today, the powerful are different from the rest of us, and we should expect that ems will be different from us in those same ways.