[married to Mackenzie]
ceo and founder of amazon
If it was merely a hoax, then the Mechanical Turk would have been forgotten as yet another eighteenth-century oddity. However, the device fit perfectly into the creeping belief—replete with excitement and anxiety—that mechanical labor (and maybe mechanical minds) could replace human labor and agency.
The United States has been going through a similar period of excitement and anxiety since at least the 1970s. Whereas some companies, like IBM, have sought to create a supercomputer that can think as well as (or better than) a human, Amazon invested instead in its own Mechanical Turk—something that feels like a machine but really has people behind it. Instead of developing the perfect computer, Amazon thought, it could just develop a way for imperfect computers to “integrate a network of humans directly into their processes,” as the company wrote in its 2005 SEC filing. In doing so, it opened the door to the weird world of crowdworking.
In 1911, the American engineer Frederick Taylor delivered a paper in which he announced that workers’ natural laziness and propensity for underworking was “the greatest evil which the working-people of both England and America are now afflicted.” His solution was a system of “scientific management,” wherein work would be divided into the smallest repeatable tasks and assigned a time limit. The aggregate of these tasks would then become the baseline for the workday, and “those who fail to rise to a certain standard are discharged and a fresh supply of carefully selected men are given work in their place.”
Almost a century later, Amazon hit upon a similar approach to worker productivity. Yet, whereas Taylor’s genius was in super-charging the assembly line by reducing all skilled work to tiny micro-tasks, the genius of Mechanical Turk is in creating virtual assembly lines.
Request for ideas… https://t.co/j6D68mhseL
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/JeffBezos/status/875418348598603776
let’s try one that facilitates all the spectrums.. all the people..
revolution of everyday life