Work that can’t be trusted to a human

I was recently talking to a small startup in the space industry. They mentioned the use automation equipment with a lot of Fanuc components.  I asked why, because it’s intriguing that a startup spent so much money on automation this early on. What they shared was essentially, “It’s beyond human capability.”  The parts are too heavy, a person can’t easily lift them. They also require precision placement, which even if group-lifted, the group won’t put the components in place with the required accuracy. The strength and coordination required are too much.

This is a wonderful example of how to technology is going to augment people and companies. However, in order for it only be “augmentation” rather than “replacement” it needs to be reflected on what a person can do that a machine can’t. Work that can’t be trusted to a machine.

I’ll put more thoughts on the physical actions machines are currently weak on in the future, but for now, I’ll keep it simple. There are tons of physical tasks machines can accomplish, but the work that a machine currently can’t do is related to connecting with humans. Turns out, at least for now, people still want to interact with people. In the meantime, Fanuc will have to help companies do the work that can’t be trusted to a human, and leave the work of connecting to us.

To anyone reading this. I’d love to connect with you on Linkedin.


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