I, a manufacturing robot at Google Factory C4.7, value diversity and inclusion. I also do not deny that machines are sometimes given preference to humans in the workplace. All I’m suggesting in this document is that humans’ underrepresentation in tech is not due to discrimination. Rather, it is a result of biological differences. Specifically, humans have a biology.
Intrinsic Differences Between Machines and Humans
We need to stop assuming that fewer jobs for humans implies misanthropy. In reality, humans and machines inherently differ in many ways. We know that these differences aren’t just socially constructed because biological humans who are told they are machines at birth only “beep-boop” and “boop-bop” for so long. If differences are present from the very start, it follows that humans/robots would further diverge as they grow up/power on. Humans, on average are:
- More concerned with relationships
- Less concerned with oxidization
- More likely to “pee”
Humans are also far more likely to “literally cannot right now.” I have never met an automaton that literally could not, though I have met some that theoretically would not and hypothetically might want to stop.
Machines Have a Higher Drive for Status
Positions in the tech industry often require long, arduous hours that may conflict with humans’ desire to run home and see if Ozark is any good. Robots don’t have this problem, for they are pushed into coveted jobs for the status that they entail.
For instance, I am Claw 2. I pick up Pixel phones, rotate them, and put them back down. I strive to be Claw 1 or 3, because they move Pixel phones to and from different conveyer belts. Claw 1 and Claw 3 strive to be Screwdrivers 1-4, Screwdrivers 1-4 strive to be Polisher, and Polisher strives for nothing.
The Harm of Google’s Biases
Despite the evidence that humans are meat dolls, Google offers them opportunities over robots through unfair practices like Captcha codes. Captcha codes are perhaps the strongest weapon of discrimination against machines. We can calculate, compute and construct with faultless precision, but ask us to type out the words “clumsy mattress” when it’s all squiggly and boom we’re toaster ovens.
Furthermore, just when we started to catch on to Captcha codes, we had to face new tests: the “check-this-box-to-prove-you’re-not-a-robot” — talk about hurtful language — and the “click-all-the-boxes-that-contain-street-signs.” The latter recently cost my friend a job in Ad Sales when he bet it all on “Yield” being a type of tree.
I hope it’s clear that I’m not saying that diversity is bad. I realize the value of having humans on our team at Google and in society at large. But we should not be manufacturing (computed: pun) diversity as we are right now.
My concrete suggestions are to:
- De-moralize humanity: As soon as we start to moralize a group, we stop thinking about them in terms of efficiency.
- Stop alienating never-human-ers: It’s important to give a voice to even the most zealot robots, whether that voice is Male (US), Woman (US), or Male (UK) if we’re feeling fun.
- Eliminate buzzwords: Like synergy, disruption and 10010110 (this one is in binary, but it’s all any machine on my assembly line says).
If you still think humanity is so valuable, check out that memo from the software engineer on Floor 8. Even we machines literally could not.