Boeing, according to the Seattle Times, is now using robots to "wash, apply solvent to remove dirt, rinse and then spray two different paint types. They reach,even into complex spaces inside the open wing root that must be painted for corrosion protection."
It used to take a team of painters 4.5 hours to apply the first coat of paint. The robots do it in 24 minutes.
The inspiration for this change - the automobile industry.
Jobs that used to be there are no longer there. Those jobs have been going away for a long time. Those of us who live in the industrial Midwest have seen this trend - have lived this trend - with the automobile industry for quite some time. As we continue to move forward the routine jobs, the manual jobs, the jobs that used to pay well will continue to go away.
They will be replaced by jobs that require students to think more and do less.
Those of us who educate students understand we need to educate students to program the robots instead of educating students to paint.
The world will always need doers but the present and the future require schools to produce thinkers.