Readers wonder whether machines are making a negative impact on humans. Peter Kneffel / EPA
Readers wonder whether machines are making a negative impact on humans. Peter Kneffel / EPA

Are machines going to prove smarter than us?

The revelation that in just 20 years robots could be doing almost half of the jobs of workers (The robots are coming, December 5) worried me. What is going on? Is this a planet for humans or robots?

Rashed Mohammad Hasan, Abu Dhabi

When there will be no jobs, will the population be controlled automatically? The editorial raises so many questions.

Gaurav Singhal, India

Machines will inevitably replace humans. Higher education leads to bigger ideas and bigger ideas lead to the invention of futuristic gadgets. One example is the calculator, or cash register. Ask anyone under the age of 40 to count change back at the checkout counter and you will find that they rely on a machine. Or ask a seven-year-old to look at the hands on a clock and tell you the time. He can’t, because he relies on a digital clock. While machines get smarter, society gets dumber.

John Saf David, Dubai

Seat-belt rule an elusive goal

I am writing in reference to your editorial Better safety for children in cars (December 5). I lose count of the number of incidents I witness each day where I see children move around in cars. I just don't get how some people think this is OK.

Sam A Sam, Abu Dhabi

I get angry when I see children jumping in the car. It’s more frustrating to see that the adults have their belts on. Is their life more important? Simply buy a car seat and take a minute to strap your children in.

Shani Elizabeth Gardiner, Abu Dhabi

The other day I saw a man driving a motorcycle and behind him was sitting a small boy. He was actually hanging at the man’s neck. He seemed to be about six years old. I do not understand how people and especially parents can be that irresponsible.

Eileen Lamprecht, Abu Dhabi

When I was leaving Dubai in July this year, a member of the RTA told me that the rear seat-belt law should be implemented by September. I got the same message every year after campaigning for five years. I’m sad to see nothing much has changed.

Lesley Cully, US

Seat belts are no guarantee to save lives, but they significantly reduce the risk of fatalities. This is common knowledge. I wonder why some people take this matter so casually.

Name withheld by request

Homemade pesticides are best

These home remedies for pesticides are great as they are made of natural ingredients such as fruits, vegetables and spices and do not have adverse effects on our health, as well as the environment, unlike pesticides laced with chemicals and fertilisers (Killing them softly with homemade pesticides, December 4). With recent incidents of fatalities caused due to pesticide poisoning, these homemade pesticides seem like the best solution.

Fatima Suhail, Sharjah

Plan ahead for retirement

If you ask me, the most critical part of preparing for retirement is just having a plan (Planning ahead a vital strategy for retiree-to-be, December 5). Whether you use a spreadsheet or a tool like OnTrajectory or some other website, you have to get everything out in front of you so you can make smarter decisions. Once you do that, implementing your disciplined retirement strategy becomes critical.

D Scott, Dubai

Nepotism is the name of the game

Salman Khan’s father, Salim Khan, is one of Bollywood’s most legendary screenwriters. Through his partnership with co-writer Javed Akhtar, Salim is credited with having paved the path for the Indian film industry’s blockbuster format in the 1970s. Something his son now rules the roost of. More importantly, the Salim-Javed duo also created the persona of the “angry young man” for Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan in the 1970s, reflecting the angst of the average Indian. In choosing to be the ordinary man’s “hero” as opposed to a thespian in new Bollywood, Salman Khan remains tightly linked to his father’s oeuvre. Thanks dad. 

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