Jack Ma thinks that the technological revolution will be the change of the next three decades. Some people are worried that they will be eliminated by the era. Let’s learn how we can compete with new technologies in Jack Ma’s eyes.
“This is what I believe. We cannot choose what kind of family we are born in. If you happen to be born in the Bill Gates family, you are very lucky, but unlikely. We cannot decide where we were born, but we can decide where we die and how we die. If you want to die in prison, it's easy. If you want to have a lot of friends around you when you die, you have to make a lot of friends and you have to change your personality and values. For me, I do not want to die in my office, I will retire and I will die on a beach.
Life is not for work. Life is a journey after you come to this world. I think we came to this world to go on holiday. Well, whether you like it or not, the world is changing much faster than you think. A lot of things will change. As I said, many white-collar jobs will disappear. You should be happy if you are a person who analyses data or learns data analysis, because data analysis will be a hot job. But let me tell you there will be no data analysis in the next ten years.
The machine will be much better than you. In the past 20 years, we have made people like machines. In the next 20 years, we will make machines like people. The machine will be more powerful and smarter than people. I told my team eight years ago that in 30 years, the best annual CEO on Times magazine’s front cover would be a machine. Whether you like it or not, let's see if we are still alive in 30 years.
While in the last few centuries people have been focusing on business and manufacturing, the core of business in the next 30 years is creativity. So many things have changed. The first is education, the way we educate children. I think we can’t just teach them knowledge. Machines learn knowledge faster. We compare who is more intelligent, who can remember things well and quickly. Let me tell you, the memory of machines is much better than yours. They can calculate faster than you, machines never get angry or tired, and are always better than you. So if you want to compete with a machine to see who is more talented, you have no chance of winning.
How can you compete with machines? I think we should teach our children culture and values. I think these are things where people can outperform machines. This is why we should teach our children these two things. Education should focus on imagination, creativity and teamwork. We should teach children music, painting and exercise. Exercise can let children understand what teamwork is; music and painting can let children know what imagination and creativity are. If we do not change the way we educate, we will have many difficulties, our children will complain. But this is not their fault, it is ours.
So I believe that the future will not be a knowledge contest, but the competition for wisdom and experience, which will let you survive in such a mobile Internet era and complex world.
Today people are worried about machines are getting smarter and playing chess better than we do, so what on earth should we do? I never worried about it. Why worry? The world is for me, artificial intelligence is Alibaba's insight. Artificial intelligence is an insult to humanity if you try to teach a machine to do something humans can do. The machine should do what humans can’t do. This is what it should be for.
Therefore, I believe this is not artificial intelligence, but machine intelligence, because it is just something that humans can’t do, just like cars. We know cars can run faster than humans, but we would never make a humanoid car. When you construct a wheel like a human leg, it can’t run fast. Because there are wheels, and people do not have wheels. Let's do something else, such as calculations, big data, and everything else. We have to be very clear that humans are not machines. I am an optimistic person. We can always beat machines. Do not worry too much. I never worry about what most scientists are worried about. I never worry about what prime ministers are worried about. I am just worried about what I am worried about, because in Alibaba, it is enough to worry every day.”
To read Jack Ma’s thoughts in another six topics of his speech, you can click the titles below:
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