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The Impact Of Automation On American Culture

2064 words - 8 pages

A few decades ago, the dream of nearly every American was to one day own a car. In present age, this dream has become a reality for the majority of the population. A 2001 report released by the Energy Information Administration showed that on average America alone has approximately 1.79 cars per household ("Household vehicles energy," 2005).With all of the luxuries and technologies that are made available for Americans, the United States has proven that they are one of the most advanced nations in the world. Now ask yourself: What would America be like without the advanced technology that it has today? Culture and life would be much more different and complicated for nearly every human being. In addition, some of today’s most important jobs wouldn‘t exist. Obviously, at one point in history this was the case and construction of every sort was carried out with hand tools and nothing else. This all changed during the Industrial Age when human-operated machines helped replace the handwork of craftspeople. Today this is known as mechanization. It was not until the nineteenth century that Americans took it a step further and automation was born. Automation is automatic operation and control of machinery that can carry out decisions without human intervention (Plotkin, 2009). As it is to expect, automation has its conveniences and its downfalls. This form of manufacturing can result in employment problems for society because human labor is not required. However, with the replacement of human workers by technology, higher quality products can be made at a cheaper cost ("Automation," 2010). Therefore, when balancing the positive and negative factors of automation, it is clear to see that it has a beneficial impact on American society.
Automation has made tremendous progress since the start of the twentieth century and today various applications of it exist. Automated video surveillance is one of these applications that monitors people and vehicles in real time within a busy environment. The purpose of a surveillance system is to record properties and movements of objects in a given area and inform authorities in case of an incident ( Javed, & Shah, 2008). Automated video surveillance is very advantageous for the federal government of the United States because it can help detect possible terrorist attacks.
Automated manufacturing is another application of automation and by far, it is the most important and useful in the United States. This practice of automation is used to produced things in a factory way. Consequently, many of the products that consumers purchase are the result of automated manufacturing. Some of these products include automobiles, refrigerators, dishwashers and videogame consoles like the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3. Today there are numerous industries applying automated manufacturing including the airline, automotive, mining, oil and food production industries (Vassar).
An additional application of automation is called home...

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