How Automated Systems Affect Our Daily Lives

ATM - Automated Teller Machine

An automated teller machine (ATM) in an old town square in Trogir, Croatia.  Why wait in long bank lines for cash when you can get your money from an automated teller 24/7?
An automated teller machine (ATM) in an old town square in Trogir, Croatia. Why wait in long bank lines for cash when you can get your money from an automated teller 24/7? | Source

A Day In The (Automated) Life

From the moment of waking to the moment of sleeping, automation rules, assists and plays its part in the events of the day. Things of the past - like the alarm clock - has been replaced by the cellular phone.

Who needs maps and gas stations? These have been replaced by the auto - navigational devices likewise Pilot. Even smart phones have these programs to help you get to a friend's house without troubling a stranger for directions.

Cell phone have city tour applications to get you around without a tour guide.

The bank teller has been replaced by the ATM - automated teller machine.

Automated operators handle a majority of 411 informational requests instead of the live, if not humorously inept telephone operators of yesterday. Who could forget Lily Tomlin's hilarious comedic portrayal of the telephone operator Ernestine saying "One ringy dingy" for each time the phone rang!

Highway attendants have been replaced, at least to an extent - by- automated tellers to receive your cash, debit card or credit card. Cameras record the license plates of offenders and the traffic violation comes directly to you home address. No escaping Big Brother!

Thanks to Automation, the majority of people go a to a service related job instead of an Industrial one. From the 19th century until the mid-20th century Industrialization was king, and once automation was introduced, the shift began to revert to Service. So, how did it all begin?

Human, Non Mechanical Telephone Operator

History of Automation

Automation began in 1947 at the General Motors auto manufacturing plant. Whoever heard of an Automation Department? As pioneers, they were looked at with skepticism. Within the next ten years, the shift in productivity using automation began, slowly decreasing the number of workers. Twenty years later, the number of blue collar workers went down while productivity increased.

Objectives of Automation

The objective is to lessen labor, reduce boredom doing tasks that don't require a human brain in order to free up human beings to do more interesting work. Some factory work can consist of really redundant tasks which can be brain-draining; imagine screwing the proverbial cap on the tube of toothpaste all day long.

Factory workers have been replaced by efficient and high quality output regulators, like control machines and robots. This has also lessened human boredom, apathy and discouragement.

In hospitals and doctors' offices around the world, automated medical devices have also greatly streamlined medical practices by measuring body functions, heartbeat, blood pressure and other vital statistics.

Telephone answering machines are certainly unfriendly, but the chance of getting an accurate message is much greater than by relying on a rattled switchboard operator. The machine records exactly what the person said, leaving a stronger link between the sender and the receiver.


Automated Highway Toll Booth

Traffic is color coded - pay the toll by credit card, debit card, cash in the way that suits the driver.  Completely automated!
Traffic is color coded - pay the toll by credit card, debit card, cash in the way that suits the driver. Completely automated! | Source

Postitives and Negatives of Automation

The biggest threat is that human labor, which is more expensive and less reliable, will become obsolete. This is called a technological excessive worker, and is a common reason for unemployment in Europe and abroad. In other words, a machine took your job! So - go home!

Machines never ever get sick! They don't have child care problems, family emergencies or mental health days. They are reliable for high quality output at a relatively low price. What's more, they don't need coffee breaks, cigarette pauses; they don't have disagreements with their fellow robots. They don't create sabotage due to frustration with their dull, dead end jobs.

However, they have limited capabilities. Because they don't have a brain, the potential for error is much greater. Lacking human qualities like a sixth sense, "something isn't right here" doesn't exist!

My Co Worker, the Robot

These robots are working in a bakery packaging plant, doing the job perhaps better than you could???
These robots are working in a bakery packaging plant, doing the job perhaps better than you could??? | Source

The Future of Automation

What does the future hold for jobs in the field of automation? No one knows, but there are hints as to what the future holds. Robots will probably continue to work in packaging and production functions. New jobs will eventually be phased in because robots tend to be more consistent than humans. It's all brand new territory, developing on a day by day basis

Robots Among Us

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Comments 10 comments

dwachira profile image

dwachira 4 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

Technology is turning out to be a man's enemy, many have lost jobs to machines and almost everyday we have to obey the machines. You go to an ATM that has no cash and you have to obey when the message says No Cash. While all this is happening, someone is sitting on a corner trying to come up with the next HI-TECH gadget into the market and make life even more harder...or is it simpler to some. Great article, voted up and useful.


EuroCafeAuLait profile image

EuroCafeAuLait 4 years ago from Croatia, Europe Author

Yes, things can be more complicated because you can't reason with a machine. If your bank balance dips below the ATM minimal amount, you can't get to your money, and that can be frustrating. But in another sense, it's great to be able to withdraw money 24 hours a day, whenever necessary. So there are obviously pros and cons. Maybe if people like us do what we can to keep these automated systems as human as possible it will be a most positive experience. Thanks for your thoughtful comment, best to you at HubPages, ECAL


Denise Handlon profile image

Denise Handlon 4 years ago from North Carolina

Rated up and interesting. Nice job on the history facts and I loved the video...haha. I still remember her voice. She was from Detroit, if I recall.


EuroCafeAuLait profile image

EuroCafeAuLait 4 years ago from Croatia, Europe Author

Great! Someone else who remembers Ernestine - Detroit? I don't know. As a little girl and I found her fascinating. There are still telephone operators in Croatia but they give you the automated version first, and if that doesn't pan out they switch you to a "real person". Thanks for inspiring such a cool topic :) Regards, ECAL


Denise Handlon profile image

Denise Handlon 4 years ago from North Carolina

I remember the days of actual telephone operators. I still get annoyed when I have to follow an extended menu on the phone! :)


malić 4 years ago

vremena od strane gra?evinskih radova privodi kraju uskoro možda smo roboti radimo svoj posao i oni možda ?ak i preuzeti svijet!


EuroCafeAuLait profile image

EuroCafeAuLait 4 years ago from Croatia, Europe Author

Hi - the above is not spam. Allow me to translate:

Mali? wrote: "The days of outside interests are bringing the work world as we know it to an end. Maybe we are those robots which (mindlessly) work our own jobs and maybe they will even take over the world!"

Response:

They will probably not take over the world, but the most boring of jobs. The challenge is for us to find new creative ways of contributing to society. The world is constantly changing - new technology, new sources of energy. In order to keep up, we must change too. Change can be painful and difficult, but change is constant.

Thanks for commenting, ECAL


Simone Smith profile image

Simone Smith 4 years ago from San Francisco

It's interesting that you've chosen 1947 as the start date for automation. I suppose that general time period was a major turning point in the world of production! Thanks for the interesting Hub.


RedElf profile image

RedElf 4 years ago from Canada

Love the "phone company" video. My grandmother and mother worked as telephone operators back when phone exchanges had a name for a prefix and a three number suffix - "CH331" or "CherryHill 3-1-1"


EuroCafeAuLait profile image

EuroCafeAuLait 4 years ago from Croatia, Europe Author

Hi RedElf, How cool that your mom and grandma were a part of history, with nowadays telephone operators becoming nearly obsolete. We lived outside Los Angeles and the call name was "Richmond 9". Thanks for the blast from the past! :)

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