Julian Villella

AI and The Evolution of Work

The replacement of human workers with automata has been a topic of debate since the time of Aristotle. Ancient Rome had been known to ban labour-saving inventions in fear it would prevent the poor from earning their bread. It has motivated radical factions of textile workers in the 19th century to destroy machinery as a form of protest. Today there is a growing belief that AI will soon make skilled workers obsolete; some even calling it the “AI catastrophe”. Are there reasons to believe this? What tendencies are baked-in to the technological systems we are building that help us understand their direction? How can we make better sense of the evolution of work?

Julian Villella is SW/ML Manager at Kindred AI building solutions that combine artificial intelligence and robotics to unlock new levels of autonomy in the real-world. He leads the team working on autonomous grasping where reinforcement learning is used in production at retail fulfillment centers across the continent. Prior, he led the machine learning team at 500px working on computer vision systems for image search across hundreds of millions of photos in real-time, auto keywording, and user and photo recommendations.

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