This article describes the rapid improvement in the ability of computers to recognize speech and images. Many of the systems that are being developed have the ability to improve with experience. That is, they have an ability to learn.
It is pretty clear that more powerful computers will be developed, and that machine performance on many tasks will be superior to human performance. It is possible to imagine a future in which we will not need as many people to perform a large number of tasks that provide employment today. We have no experience with an economy that is able to provide a much larger portion of its output without human labor.
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