Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Incredible Shrinking Job

Business Insider lists ten popular jobs that are becoming less in demand due largely to technological changes and advancements.

They list mail carriers, farmers, drill press operators, meter readers, newspaper reporters, travel agents, lumberjacks (but they're OK), flight attendants, printing workers, tax examiners and collectors. 

Tax collectors might be cause for celebration.  These are all pretty obvious.  I have used a post office box for years despite the fact that it is eight miles to the local post office.

The decline in the number of farmers is nothing new.  It goes along with what we posted the other day about more food from fewer acres

In some of the cases we are looking at displacement rather than replacement -- for example,  newspaper reporters and travel agents decline but the number of people needed to support internet news and travel sites might increase slightly.     

I am reminded of a remark an executive type made regarding myself and another programmer back in the mid '80s.  "It's a good thing computers were invented because I don't know what people like you two would be good for otherwise."  The funny thing is that he wasn't joking.  He really disliked that he had to depend on "our kind" to get some of his work done.  He would much rather have had a dozen browbeaten clerks to harass than a couple of (in his opinion) arrogant smart-asses with whom to contend.

The world changes, not always to everybody's liking. 


  1. A few men and half a million in logging equipment clear acres upon acres in just a few days around here. I wish I could be more specific (and accurate) but as I drive around, it looks like a small crew of maybe 3 or 4 will clear 50 acres in a week.

  2. A guy across the road from me had a wooded draw on his front forty logged out. It was only maybe five acres, but there were a lot of gigantic white oaks and similar stuff. A couple of guys with the big machines cleared it out in no time. It was pretty steep but it didn't seem to slow them down much.