The New York TimesThe New York Times

Does ChatGPT mean robots are coming for skilled jobs?

By Paul Krugman

06 Dec 2022 · 4 min read

Editor's Note

A new and potentially revolutionary application can mimic human conversation and write complex texts. A NYT columnist asks: Will machines now take over much of what we think of as “knowledge work?”

Will robots take away our jobs?

People have been asking that question for an astonishingly long time. Regency-era British economist David Ricardo added to the third edition of his classic “Principles of Political Economy,” published in 1821, a chapter titled “On Machinery,” in which he tried to show how the technologies of the early Industrial Revolution could, at least initially, hurt workers. Kurt Vonnegut’s 1952 novel “Player Piano” envisaged a near-future America in which automation has eliminated most employment.

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