A company called RoboBurger is out with a machine that will make you a burger with custom toppings in six minutes for $6.99, Jennifer A. Kingson reports in What’s Next.

In the food courts of the future, you could avoid human interaction by ordering from a hamburger vending machine, a pizza vending machine and, of course, cupcake vending machines.

The first RoboBurger machine was just installed in the Newport Centre Mall in Jersey City, New Jersey.

Besides mariner’s lamentations about the future regarding the loss of human contact and abuse to the social herding instinct referenced in the last post, he wonders what will happen to all the low income fast food workers as these boxes spread. The employees don’t have any assets to speak of – where is the next underpaid job market?

Artificial intelligence expert and venture capitalist Kai-Fu Lee predicted that 40 percent of the world’s jobs will be replaced by robots in the next 15 to 25 years. That means two out of every five working class people will be out of work at a time when there are no other jobs to be had.

The type of job that is in imminent danger is warehousing people filling orders for online sites like Amazon.  Also at great risk are taxi drivers, uber drivers, and other ride-share drivers. Autonomous self-driving cars will use AI technology to drive and apps to identify who needs to be picked up and dropped off. Payment will be made with a credit-card swipe.

UK’s Institute of the Motor Industry states, ‘As many as 97 percent of active auto mechanics aren’t qualified to work on electric cars and won’t get their hands dirty in the future – robots can handle it.’

Assembly line workers will disappear and, interestingly, so will air traffic controllers.

Close to mariner’s home, librarians will disappear as the tracking system becomes fully automated and virtually all reading will be online or in digitized form.

Remember Nadine? She will be the replacement for payroll clerks, human resource staff, customer service representatives, cashiers (don’t get mariner’s wife started), translators and even mortgage brokers.. . . And this is a small list. Mariner is dumbfounded by what the world will be like in 2050. Guru won’t even talk about it. Our best guess for insight may be a fortune teller, certainly not our government’s octogenarian legislators.

Ancient Mariner



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