There’s a big AI conference happening in the UK now. One quote " the most disruptive force in history" Eventually no workers will be needed. AI will do everything.
Just curious if you folks think AI will ever displace professional auto mechanics? Will AI robots become the only “repair staff” fixing cars eventually? It seems like a pretty tall order. I can see AI replacing accountants, engineers, coffee shop staff, lawyers, but AI replacing auto mechanics? Hard to grasp how that could happen, unless of course the manufacturers were in on it and designed the cars so nobody but an AI robot could fix them.
Maybe, but we are a long way from AI robots as the only repair staff. IMO this is one of the last things that would happen in the automobile industry. I think that AI auto building would happen first. The car companies have the money to invest in AI robots that would be an extension of the robots on the assembly line already. Those that build today’s automotive robots will bring out newer, more capable versions and also expand their product line. If someone produces an AI robot anytime soon it will be too expensive for an auto repair shop to afford.
I think a great application for AI would be for a phone screening system. If it noticed a lot of incoming calls that the answering machine picked up, but the caller didn’t leave a message were from the same number, then it would learn to not allow the answering machine to pick up those calls at all. And it would figure out by your behavior which numbers should allow the phone to produce an audible ring. And which go right to the answering machine, no ringing, and which which are just totally ignored.
Well, that is not entirely true. The surgeon is in control the entire time, the “robot” feature is merely the robotic arms holding the instruments that the surgeon controls and all actions are controlled by the surgeon. The Robotic Surgical System does nothing without the input from the surgeon.
The original term was “Garbage in, Garbage out…” But one of the first concepts AI learned was equivocation; and it carried that lesson to the final consequence, “If it can’t dazzle you with its brilliance, it will baffle you with its bulls**t”
If AI can replace (or, at least assist) Surgeons, why couldn’t it replace mechanics? For more than a decade, many types of surgery have been done by Surgeons using a robotic device, rather than their own hands, to operate on patients. The next step–which is apparently approaching rapidly–is for AI to do much more of a surgical procedure… after proper programming, of course.
If AI is capable of assisting in surgery on humans–whose organs are not always situated exactly where they should be–then similar technology should be capable of repairing mechanical and electronic devices where the location of components is standardized.
It’s a good question but the cost-benefit of AI will likely never happen when it comes to car repair. It’s one thing for an AI robotic device to assist in a $100K+ surgery. It’s another thing entirely for an AI robotic device to replace the tech needed to replace a $1K head gasket. Hospitals and dealership service departments/independent shops are on different planets when it comes to budgets. I had an emergency appendectomy a couple of years ago which is very basic surgery. I was in-and-out in 8 hours and the bill was over $40K to the insurance company.
AI will most certainly be used as a diagnostic aid similar to Identifix, etc… But as far as replacing the hands and feet of techs? I don’t think so. Now, if AI could help with my occasional lower back issues…
I had a chatty internist in the '90s. She told me she hired a consultant who told her that charging higher prices would get her payouts to go up.
I had an appendectomy in July. I spent 4 days in hospital. The hospital billed me $121,142.52 for 4 days, just for being in the hospital, not for medical services or drugs. Blue Cross paid $16,703.65; I paid $1,480; Blue Cross disallowed $102,958.87.
‘The time has come to consider abandoning routine appendectomy for patients with uncomplicated appendicitis. The operation served patients well for more than 100 years. With development of more precise diagnostic capabilities like CT and effective broad-spectrum antibiotics, appendectomy may be unnecessary for uncomplicated appendicitis, which now occurs in the majority of acute appendicitis cases.’
That’s why I spent 4 days: they tried antibiotics for the first 2.
I believe it will definitely play some role, though it’s difficult to predict because the supporting infrastructure isn’t in place yet.
For example, if in the 80s (pre-OBDII days) we asked the question:
> Will computers ever play a role in engine and vehicle operation?
it’s likely no one would ever have been able to imagine the widespread use of computers in vehicles today. But once components became faster, smaller, and less expensive, the growth blossomed.
As for AI and its use in car repair, it will take time, and it will be a “crawl, walk, run” progression. Once someone finds a way where AI can save money in car repairs, the doors will open for more investment.
On a side note, in the near future, vehicle computers will be controlled by a Linux based operating system instead of the current ECU. The industry buzzword for them is ‘Software Defined Vehicles’, which will be any vehicle that manages its operations, adds functionality, and enables new features primarily or entirely through software. (Another way to create new revenue streams.) Several software companies helping to build operating systems for various car manufacturers.
A guy goes to the mechanic because his car is running rough. The mechanic lifts the hood, adjusts a screw, and the engine runs smoothly. He charges $11 (how you know it’s an old joke.) The guy balks, says, ‘$11 for turning a screw?’ The mechanic says, ‘$1 for turning a screw; $10 for knowing which screw to turn.’