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Thu Sep 13, 2018, 08:55 PM

Stopped in a local McDonalds today for coffee, an employee was miffed I didn't use their new kiosk

to order my coffee. I mentioned that the automated kiosk system of ordering will someday cost hundreds of thousands if not millions of people to lose their jobs. She then began extolling the virtues of the automated ordering. I asked her if she had ever contemplated that these kiosks could eliminate her job. She stopped for second and said, "I had never thought about it like that".

I am under no illusions about the future of automation, but I am a bit stunned that so many people are eager to usher in their own demise. I predict the future will experience huge upheaval in regard to automation.

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Reply Stopped in a local McDonalds today for coffee, an employee was miffed I didn't use their new kiosk (Original post)
Vinnie From Indy Sep 13 OP
Trust Buster Sep 13 #1
TheBlackAdder Sep 14 #111
DownriverDem Sep 14 #173
dem4decades Sep 13 #2
trixie2 Sep 14 #174
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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 08:58 PM

1. Like bank tellers pushing online banking, workers are required to promote corporate initiatives.

 

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Response to Trust Buster (Reply #1)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:45 AM

111. I went to LabCorp, and they were doing the same thing. While faster, it will eliminate a job or two.

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Response to Trust Buster (Reply #1)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 01:40 PM

173. Like CVS Pharmacy

Some of them have check out areas where you do it yourself with credit or debit. Standing in line a worker tries to send you to self checkout. I tell them no it will cost jobs. I always get a crazy look.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 08:59 PM

2. I take my grandson to a McDonald's with automated system and always order at the counter.

And the woman that greets you at the door always seems miffed I say no thanks to her invitation to use the kiosk.

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Response to dem4decades (Reply #2)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 01:44 PM

174. because the workers are being forced to "encourage" you

Believe me management is watching just how many people are NOT using the self machines. These workers are given orders to instead of upsell to push the machines.

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Response to dem4decades (Reply #2)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 06:55 PM

186. If I wanted to press buttons to get my coffee

I would stay home and make it myself.....Oh hell, who am I fooling, I make my own because it's better and cheaper.

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Response to Farmer-Rick (Reply #186)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:56 PM

187. As much as I am not a fan of McDonald's, I still love a large coffee for a buck.

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Response to dem4decades (Reply #187)

Sat Sep 15, 2018, 05:21 AM

191. And they have pretty good coffee, if they make it fresh

I actually buy their ground coffee at the grocery store.

My local McDonalds leaves the coffee pot on forever, so their coffee tends to be burnt and old.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:00 PM

3. My usual grocery store went completely to self checkout. cashiers were there to help you figure out

how to use the equipment.

So no check out people, no bagging people, just self check out and some helpers.

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Response to wasupaloopa (Reply #3)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:09 PM

8. are the prices any lower?

At least Aldi you bag you own stuff for a reason.

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Response to flygal (Reply #8)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:36 PM

22. Well I know at the local Bi-Los that it has not resulted in lower prices

but it has resulted in me walking out and going to another store rather than wait 5 to 10 minutes for someone to come help when the self checkout freezes or does not ring an item up correctly.

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #22)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 06:40 AM

100. Bi-Lo has gotten ridiculous since they were bought by Southeastern Grocers.

The only reason I shop there is because they are the only grocery store that carries the Sunday issue of "The State" newspaper around this hellhole town, and they are the only ones who still double coupons. They only have one cashier, and half the time, the self-checkouts are not even operating. I used to get great deals there, but most weeks, it's just a 'fill in' trip. I never thought I'd be finding better deals at Food Lion.

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Response to GoCubsGo (Reply #100)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 06:51 AM

101. Yup. The problem that Bi-Lo as well as Food Lion and a number of other grocery store

chains across the country are making though is trying to compete with Walmart on price when what they should be doing is focusing on providing something Walmart wont pay for which is the workers to provide customer service.
After all why should customers go to a Food Lion or a Bi-Lo to pay more money for items than at Walmart when they both provide the same bad level of customer service?

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Response to wasupaloopa (Reply #3)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:12 PM

10. Our grocery store put the automated kiosks in about 5 years ago.

They were all removed within three years. They are fine when you have a handful of items but not for the usual grocery trip. I believe theft went up, whether intentional or not, as well.

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Response to Ace Rothstein (Reply #10)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:28 PM

52. I don't know about thelft.

But what I saw with self checkout, if you have more than 10 items or items that require weighing, it is best to go to a cashier.

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Response to Ace Rothstein (Reply #10)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 10:14 AM

131. Walmart is slowly phasing out the self check-outs...

because they say they are losing money due to theft.
I don't like them because they use one person to monitor a bunch of registers, costing people jobs.

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Response to wasupaloopa (Reply #3)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:17 PM

13. That would be my ex-grocery store.

I refuse to use self checkout. I am not paying to do their job.

That said, my wife says I have become a 50 year old curmudgeon. I still get miffed that no one counts back change!

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Response to GulfCoast66 (Reply #13)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 03:50 AM

94. Change?

I haven't used pocket rocks except for tolls in at least 20 years.

I don't use cash in general but I really hate coins.

And I'm over 50.

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Response to alphafemale (Reply #94)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 05:48 AM

95. I prefer cash. Too each his(or her) own I guess

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Response to GulfCoast66 (Reply #13)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 09:18 AM

122. my problem with check out at grocery stores is that they want you to use plastic bags

they make it difficult for even checkers to load my bags
I try never to get those plastic bags that a so flimsy that they have to use two and only hold three items or less.
I usually have to bag myself because checkers can not get my stuff in my bags. I can get everything in two bags that we bought over 15 years ago and still do the job. Those store plastic bags should be banned.

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Response to scarytomcat (Reply #122)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 10:44 AM

136. Plastic bags are banned some places

Seattle has banned plastic bags. Always preferred paper anyway but we keep extra reusable bags in the trunk for groceries also.
I think I just read where India was moving to outlaw plastic bags.

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Response to scarytomcat (Reply #122)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 04:17 PM

178. I think Kroger is phasing out plastic bags, too. Hoorah for them. Something that made me

so sad is finding a bird's nest in our fig tree that had pieces from a plastic bag woven into the nest. I hope the nest-maker didn't have to chew up the plastic bag in order to get those strands. It makes me sick to think about all of this plastic ending up in the ocean, the landfills, everyfuckingwhere.

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Response to wasupaloopa (Reply #3)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:10 PM

40. Fresh & Easy

 

That is exactly what they were, and guess where that company is now.

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Response to wasupaloopa (Reply #3)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:22 PM

48. If we all started stealing as much as possible with this, maybe they'd change their ways

Not advocating for stealing from them (but I am).

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Response to gilpo (Reply #48)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 01:54 PM

175. In the future there will be a huge computer, a man and a vicious dog

The computer runs everything, the vicious dog keeps anyone from unplugging or fucking with it. The man is there to feed the dog. I don't mind machines replacing everybody as long as the profits from productivity are shared by all.

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Response to wasupaloopa (Reply #3)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 10:31 AM

134. This hasn't happened in my local chain in the Midwest.

At least not in my town.

I genuinely dislike them. To me, the most annoying aspect (for some of them, anyway) is their insistence that you keep items on the surface next to the scanner after scanning them. If you move a bag into your cart to make room, it won't let you scan something else.

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Response to wasupaloopa (Reply #3)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 01:21 PM

169. I'm so old that I remember when they'd unload your grocery cart for you

Something to remember is that self-checkouts, automated ordering systems, kiosks, ATMs, etc. do not pay any payroll taxes.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:01 PM

4. My eldest son recently moved to Florida and he opened up his bank account, all online. He never had

to physically go to the bank, he said it was easy and convenient...LOL.

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Response to monmouth4 (Reply #4)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:16 PM

44. Yeah, and like my son I bet he's scared to talk to strangers

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Response to DemocracyMouse (Reply #44)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 06:30 AM

99. No, not at all. n/t

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Response to monmouth4 (Reply #4)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:38 PM

57. A couple of years ago someone drove from NY to LA and never talked to a single person as a trial

Gas, food as we know but stayed in motels where they picked up the key from a box

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Response to monmouth4 (Reply #4)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 09:38 AM

123. I like my ability to deposit checks by taking a picture of them

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Response to monmouth4 (Reply #4)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:01 PM

154. I've used USAA as my bank for 25 years. Never been in a branch

To my knowledge they don't have any branches outside of Corporate buildings in San Antonio and CO Springs. All online now. Used to be via the mail. They treated me with respect and didn't fee me to death like every other bank did at the time. This was at a time that one needed a "check guarantee card" to write a check. B of A wouldn't give me one because my balance used to drop below $100 on a fairly consistant basis near pay day. Guess whose balance isnt that way anymore and guess who still remembers me who treated me right when I was young and who didn't?

They are excellent.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:03 PM

5. I never ever use self checkout in the Grocery Store or the Big Box stores.

Doesn't matter if I have to wait in line for over a hour. I simply refuse.

Same thing with Mickey D's. I'll walk out first.

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Response to sellitman (Reply #5)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:23 PM

49. Ditto. I refuse.

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Response to sellitman (Reply #5)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:42 PM

85. There's a manager/supervisor type that tries to get me to use the self checkout and each time I say

"I don't work here. I'm a customer."

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Response to TeamPooka (Reply #85)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 06:54 AM

102. Right? I don't get why people want to do all of that stuff for themselves,

when they can actually get some help from experts

I don't use them much, either, more because I want to support human beings. I dread the day that I go into an empty store, just me and the robot slaves anchored to the floor to keep me company.

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Response to TeamPooka (Reply #85)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:12 AM

143. Wa Wa's is the worse for that I almost had a stroke in that store.

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Response to TeamPooka (Reply #85)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:23 AM

146. I Was In A Grocery Store

about a month ago with my reusable bags. I use them all the time in this store and others, reusable grocery bags are big in my area, it's not a new thing. The cashier proceeded to instruct me as to how I should bag my groceries. She did it to the woman in front of me who had reusable bags, but I wasn't paying close attention and thought that that woman WANTED to bag herself. Couldn't figure out way she volunteered to bag and then had such a problem doing it. As a customer, I don't bag my groceries, but the way she wanted me to do it was impossible anyway, because I would have had to throw the groceries at the open bags, I couldn't reach. It was clear that she was NOT going to bag, so I let the entire order build up at the end, I paid the bill, and then I walked with my cart around to the end of the belt where I could reach my groceries and started bagging. She then began doing the next person's checkout, moving those groceries down until they were intermixed with mine. It was the weirdest thing that ever happened in a grocery store. I don't know what made her think she was doing the right thing, but I will certainly never use that cashier again, even if I do see her, which I have not since that episode. I'm still shaking my head over that one.

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Response to TeamPooka (Reply #85)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 05:29 PM

184. Excellent reply!

Stealing.

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Response to sellitman (Reply #5)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:10 AM

89. You can't check out liquor at the self serves

So I'm safe.

Seriously, I don't use them.

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Response to sellitman (Reply #5)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:48 AM

112. Lowes did that to me. I had a mixed bunch of crap, was tired, asked for a register, they refused.

.

I fucking walked out, leaving the cart were it was.

.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:07 PM

6. Reminds me of going to one of my bank's branches

They tried to get people to use the kiosk but I told the person urging me that I really wanted to deal with a person.

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Response to area51 (Reply #6)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:17 PM

45. Who would have thought that people have aesthetic value?!

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:08 PM

7. I always skip past The automation to talk to flesh and blood people when I can

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:10 PM

9. The Mickey D's here in

Switzerland and France all have those kiosks at the entrance. I don't eat at those places but had to go in looking for the restroom and noticed them. The people ordering didn't seem to mind. hmmm. I don't like it even if I don't eat that stuff for all of the reasons you mention.

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Response to LittleGirl (Reply #9)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:19 PM

15. When I visit France and anywhere in Europe for that matter.

I refuse to enter American fast food joints. For gods sake, I am in France!

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Response to GulfCoast66 (Reply #15)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:50 PM

26. I agree, GulfCoast66.

The first time I went to Paris, my nephew (who lived in Belgium and was in the Air Force) tried to suggest we eat our first meal at Mickie Dees. I was appalled! I told him in no uncertain terms, “I did not come all the way to Paris, France to eat at McDonald’s!” He looked at me like I was nuts but we did not eat fast food in Paris.

My husband and I will be going on a river cruise in France next month and will finish the trip with three days in Paris. We are looking forward to the delicious food we’ll have while we are there. And it won’t be from McDonald’s. LOL

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Response to Grammy23 (Reply #26)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:55 PM

34. We are off to Venice and Germany next month.

Be there at the same time I am guessing.

After 4 straight trips to France I am already missing it. Plus I speak some French. Not a lick of Italian or German!

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Response to GulfCoast66 (Reply #34)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:09 PM

39. We went to Italy in 2002 and loved it.


We studied Italian a little at home and were with someone who is fluent in Italian, thank goodness. My husband knew just enough to ask where the bathroom was and the Italian word for banana. It was a great trip that started in Rome and ended in the Cinque Terra. Venice was amazing. I’d go back with no hesitation. But then we like the places we’ve been in Europe. We went to Northern France in 2015. We need to win the lottery so we can go more often! Even struggling with the language is fun and they appreciate any effort you make.

Enjoy your trip! We will go Oct. 9 - 20th on the Viking Delling on the Rhone.

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Response to Grammy23 (Reply #39)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:14 PM

43. Y'all have fun.

I love Paris. If you love history check out Lafayette’s grave. Obscure and not easy to find but the best thing we have done in 4 paris trips.

Have a nice evening.

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Response to Grammy23 (Reply #39)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:03 PM

72. Cool, I hear Viking

is the best cruise to take.
They have a Rhine cruise that ends in Basel.

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Response to Grammy23 (Reply #26)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 09:48 AM

125. my aunt and uncle did that river cruise thing

and said it was spectacular. It's on our bucket list. Enjoy!

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Response to GulfCoast66 (Reply #15)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:35 PM

54. Yep. You're in another country, eat their normal food.

I agree, I never go to an American chain in another country, that is like driving with square tires.

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Response to GulfCoast66 (Reply #15)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:04 PM

74. Yep, I agree

I didn't eat McD's in the states why would I eat there here? I don't.
Finding a bathroom in Paris is hard.

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Response to GulfCoast66 (Reply #15)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 08:48 AM

115. Absolutely. In the 80s, I was on a tour through Europe

with a choir and an orchestra. One day, the tour bus stopped at a MacDonalds somewhere in France. Everyone trooped in. I went across the street to a bar and ordered a beer and a croque monsieur. I watched the bus from the window, and left the bar as people were getting back on it.

MacDonalds in France? Non, merci.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #115)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 08:54 AM

119. Damn you!! Now I want a croque madame for lunch!!

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Response to GulfCoast66 (Reply #119)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 09:00 AM

120. That sounds good, too.

Sadly, there is no little neighborhood boîte near me here in St. Paul, MN. I do not understand eating at MacDonalds in France. The sidewalk sausage roll vendor is a much better choice, and you get the additional benefit of actually using your high school French. Besides, who wants to stand in line behind a bunch of American you've been riding the bus with to order at MacDonalds? I walked in, sat down, ordered, got my beer immediately, and the sandwich shortly thereafter. While my travel companions were still waiting to order, I was eavesdropping on conversations in French.

People are very stupid, I think.

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Response to GulfCoast66 (Reply #15)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 10:27 AM

133. Yes, bit for those of American ex-pats

who lived in a European country for a time, sometimes it was nice to have a "taste of home." (Dutch food sucks, btw)

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Response to LittleGirl (Reply #9)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 10:26 AM

132. Same in Amsterdam

Only once did I use it. The rest of the time I always went and ordered at the counter.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:14 PM

11. Tell them you are dyslexic.

Then tell them about the people with handicaps laws.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:14 PM

12. I figure for each cashier they lose

They are creating a job for the programmer, the repair person, the hardware builders, a person that cleans the kiosks, etc.

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Response to Gore1FL (Reply #12)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:24 PM

16. They'll all be replaced by robots in short order as well.

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Response to JenniferJuniper (Reply #16)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:40 PM

58. Exactly. The gains are shorterm.

Lots of companies are pushing into intelligent repair and cleaning robots, and robots that repair them when they break. Within 20 years, one code writer and and one production engineer will replace 5,000-10000 lower wage workers, and income inequality would have gotten worse.

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Response to Gore1FL (Reply #12)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:37 PM

23. Nope

I'm sure it's not trivial but a handful of programmers for 12-24 months? Some crew to do periodic fixes and updates. Failure rate can't be too high but they probably do break regularly from use and abuse.

Just saying it's definitely not even close to one for one. If it were, keeping cashiers would be cheaper because programmers make more.

I admit I don't use because I usually don't go to the one store that has software that doesn't completely p*ss me off. When I do go there I go to person unless there is a line and machine is free

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Response to Midnightwalk (Reply #23)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:20 PM

46. What is gained in cost savings is lost in shopping quality

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Response to Midnightwalk (Reply #23)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:48 PM

63. You are wrong. I have actual experience.

I work on intelligent systems to make production faster and more reliable. I own my own business, but I have worked for large companies. In the industry that I started my engineering career in, around 20 workers were needed to do 800 units per day, 10 years later, that number was 4-5 workers, even with the complexity of the units increasing 5 fold. Robots made the difference.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #63)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:47 PM

87. Are you agreeing?

I was arguing/commenting to the person, Gore1FL, who said for each cashier job lost their job there would be a programmer or mfg or repair job gained.

I said that was wrong and gave I somewhat padded guesstimate of what first release of software would take. That is initial cost. Some minor cost to keep sw up to date. I didn't even give guess about building the units but I'd guess they are mostly common with the units cashiers use except for some theft avoidance for supermarkets and user friendliness for kiosks. In other words no significant cost difference for the hw.

Didn't go into the fact that a handful of vendors probably do it for all the chains that use these. Customization to make it look like one store vs another is old art.

Don't work in this area of computers but have some experience so interested if that's close

From your response I don't see what you are disagreeing with.

All that said I go to the human almost always because that's usually better for me. But between an ATM or a teller I'd pick the ATM for withdrawals

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Response to Midnightwalk (Reply #87)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:01 PM

155. Sorry, I may have replied to the wrong post.

From my perspective, I see intelligent systems having a devastating impact on society if owners of those systems don't share the financial gains with the rest of society.

I like the idea of use of intelligent machine, frankly, they allow avoidance of the nonsense that people often bring to work. But I also believe the gains from using intelligent systems must be shared with society to maintain social stability.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #155)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 01:12 PM

168. Agree

But I also worry that just sharing the gains such as through ubi dodges the a larger question. What does the future look like if large percentages of people don't have to or can't work, beyond the question of are the financially ok?

Not to discount that and tackling "sharing the gains" is the more immediate and tangible problem. Will we wind up thinking of ourselves as part of the "productive class" versus the "free loading class"? For sure there will be people and organizations that would like to exploit that.

Sorry for some unorganized thoughts. The techie questions are a lot easier to grapple with

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Response to Midnightwalk (Reply #168)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 04:46 PM

181. Excellent points.

Once machines eliminate jobs, I see Romney types making "The 80%Takers, 20% makers" assault. I see arguments about WHO should be allowed to have children. The whole thing opens itself up to a potentially tragic mess.

Some here on DU argue that the world don't need anymore kids. People like Elon Musk envision colonizing Mars, and I am sure that once humans can reach inhabital planets, some will want to colonize those (which in itself is pretty arrogant if life forms are already inhabiting those places).

Personally. I think that we are already past the point of no return unless mindsets change dramatically. Automation owners MUST share their financial gains and beneficiaries of that sharing MUST accept that they have a societal role to play. If automaton owners refuse to share, we will perish, but if beneficiaries of UBI don't make wise choices and look at each day as a free day for fun and games, we will perish.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #63)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:57 AM

152. Again:

What is gained in cost savings is lost in shopping quality.

The quality of shopping, working and social connection is everything in life. To discount it is to be unaware of one's own endocrine system.


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Response to DemocracyMouse (Reply #152)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:47 PM

165. Read below

Responded to someone else with a backend question. I am a techie. But in that reply I detailed why I don't like pos systems but do like atms. And some thoughts or worries about where automation will take us.

I'll add that I do whatever I have to to not navigate phone systems. Get me to operator in shortest path


The genie is out of the bottle. I don't think I'm different than most. Some times automation is my preference sometimes not. But that won't stop automation and its impacts. I think it will be as disruptive as anything that's come our way and probably in a much shorter time frame. Industrial revolution took longer to unfold I think.

How our culture, government, institutions adjust is going to be fascinating. I hope in good ways and not just like a train wreck. History probably tells us both will happen.

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Response to Midnightwalk (Reply #165)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 04:55 PM

182. I am betting on a train wreck.

There will be people that own the machines and people that can't find a job. You have to look no farther than today's debate concerning issues like Medicaid, CHIP, Food Assistance to see how that will go.

If people are sent off to colonize another planet and they survive, they will only screw (in more ways than one) themselves back into the predicament that they left. I really think as a species, we are in our last year's, it may take 10,000 years, 100,000 years or 10 million years, but we are done. My bet is on the shortest time, we have created too many large problems for ourselves and the planet.

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Response to Midnightwalk (Reply #23)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:58 AM

114. IT officer here. They still have to pay programmers whether cashiers or bank tellers are used.

.

Those POS systems and the back end systems don't program themselves. New features and updates are added all of the time. Local mom & pop stores don't to it, but larger stores, who use self-checkout, have more complex systems to maintain.

After gathering an order, I would like to end the transaction on a relaxed note, leaving the shopping experience better. The frustration of not only pulling individual items out of a cart, scanning them, confirming that the price was correct (since 80-90% of all sales errors benefit the store and not the customer) and then bagging each item, one at a time... that sucks.

.

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Response to TheBlackAdder (Reply #114)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 08:54 AM

118. back end question

Just curious. i wouldn't have thought the backend system would change based on self check out vs cashier except maybe to record which was used. Is that wrong?

ATMs seem more convenient to me. The POS systems annoy me by making me slow down to their pace. I can't scan as fast as I can grab. The theft prevention stuff is very finicky on how you bag. Having to retry makes me walk away rather than risk being charged twice. Buying liquor I have to wait for a human to approve it. And none of the sw let's me type in my phone # to get the discount. I refuse to carry the stupid cards

Since I'm already in the store I'd rather go to a person. As i said above if there is a line at the cashier and the machine is free I sometimes use them. The line with a cashier moves faster than the line for the machine because individuals take more time to figure things out like paying for fruits and the machines slow you down any way.

I have no good ideas about the larger question about automation eliminating jobs and where that will take to us. New jobs will happen in ways we can't think of but I do fear that AI and robotics are going to cause fundamental changes. Ubi is a tool but what happens when large numbers of people are idle? Are they free or controlled? Productive or indolent?

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:18 PM

14. She never thought about losing her own job? Amazing.

Dumbfounding. It's too easy to make a joke about her so I won't.

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Response to brush (Reply #14)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:08 PM

38. Awwww

 

I agree with you completely, and am sorry you won't post your joke.

Myself, I was curious whether a light bulb appeared above her head when she made the connection.

Though I'm sure once the DU poster went away, she resumed her job touting the virtues of this amazing burger ordering machine.

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Response to brush (Reply #14)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:43 PM

60. They are sold amazing bullshit about how much easier it will make their job.

6 months after robots work, 40% or more of the workers are gone for good.

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Response to brush (Reply #14)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 09:59 AM

129. I worked for a company that was briefly responsible for installing the kiosks. From what initially

the plan was for stores with kiosks was to upscale the service - instead of standing at the counter to pick up your order employees would provide table service. Every one of the locations we installed kiosks at first had to renovate and upgrade their store.

That's not to say that the end goal wasn't head count reduction.

I don't know, I look at it the same way I do when I go to the deli at the grocery store. If there are too many people waiting in line, I enter my order in the deli kiosk, continue my shopping and then circle back when my order is ready. This is a convenience and does not reduce staff as far as I can tell.

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Response to seaglass (Reply #129)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:18 AM

144. Me too

I love the deli kiosk. I can do the rest of my shopping and just come back and get my deli stuff. Wawa (convenience stores) have looks to order sandwiches, it saves time (print out your receipt, pay at the register, and by that time your food is probably done) and your order is usually right. Even better is places like Panera that you can order and pay from your phone.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:29 PM

17. Intelligent robots will reduce employment to 5-15%.

Machine have and will increasingly have an enormous negative impact on economic mobility and social peace. I don't see a good end, most owners that deploy intelligent robots don't want to share the financial gains, at some point, they will run out of customers that have money to buy stuff.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:33 PM

18. Did you insist she calculate your total by hand?

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:33 PM

19. Automation was supposed to free us up from work

shorten our work week, tax companies massive profits and supply a minimum income for workers displaced, but capitalism doesn't work that way, people are trash, greed is good.

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Response to elmac (Reply #19)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:21 PM

47. Ah! I agree!

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Response to elmac (Reply #19)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:50 PM

66. Automation owners won't share the financial gain, they will get people to vote for a Trump.

While they turn workers against eachother.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #66)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:59 AM

153. Thank you! You are, sadly, quite correct!

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Response to elmac (Reply #19)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 08:49 AM

116. Once, we needed technology to survive. But now?

Technology needs us, so it can survive.

Voice commands for turning on house lights? Smartphones? Automated check-outs? Navigation systems? Streaming video? Siri? Echo? Alexa? Google Home?

NONE of these are essential to our daily existence. In fact, life would be much simpler without them!

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:35 PM

20. No different than when I worked shortly at a bank...

...the tellers were given incentive to push people to use the ATM in the guise of "free checking". Every person signed up was a point...the person who got the most that month, $200 dollar prize, gift certificate and some hoopla by the bank manager. And none of them realized they were essentially eliminating their own jobs.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:36 PM

21. Many years ago one of the tellers at my bank instructed me to use the machine for my transaction

I have some sympathy for her position, even though she was unpleasant: the whole thing was disappearing out from under her, and no doubt she'd been told to tell customers to use the ATM. However, I looked her in the eye and said when the day comes that I can't talk to a human being, I will change banks.

That entire operation is gone now, name and all. My husband and I still conduct our banking with human beings, but we and they are a vanishing breed. Grocery stores and hardware stores have a combination of checkout lines where some of them have people to interact with and others require the customer to scan and total their own purchase. They are training us, the consumer, to not expect other humans to serve us.

Your MacDonald's person was just naive and doing as she had been told. You may have wrecked her day by forcing her to contemplate the demise of the only job she could find. Or perhaps she found sudden enlightenment.

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Response to Hekate (Reply #21)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:48 PM

25. I walked into a local credit union to

sign some paperwork for an interest free utility loan. It wasn't my choice; only certain banks do these sorts of transactions.

Saturday morning, beautiful building, plenty of employees. Busy town, on a very busy road. Plenty of employees standing around doing nothing but smiling at me. My transaction took a little longer than usual because of some system problems so the entire thing ended up taking a half hour.

Not a soul walked into the place during that entire time.

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Response to Hekate (Reply #21)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:59 PM

167. wrecked her day

that was my thought. I'm not 100% sure telling her this is the right thing to do (I'm not sure it's wrong either).

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:45 PM

24. If you want to see

the future of automation:

Äkta människor (Real Humans)

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:51 PM

27. The Automation Song

by the ever prescient Phil Ochs (1963)

Oh I laid down your railroads, every mile of track.
With the muscles on my arm and the sweat upon my back.
And now the trains are rolling, they roll to every shore
You tell me that my job is through, there ain't no work no more.
Though I laid down your highways all across the land.
With the ringing of the steel and the power of my hands.
And now the roads are there like ribbons in the sky,
You tell me that my job is through but still I wonder why.
For the wages were low and the hours were long
And the labour was all I could bear.
Now you've got new machines for to take my place
And you tell me it's not mine to share.
Though I laid down your factories and laid down your fields,
With my feet on the ground and my back to your wheels.
And now the smoke is rising, the steel is all a-glow,
I'm walking down a jobless road and where am I to go.
Tell me, where am I to go.

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Response to JenniferJuniper (Reply #27)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:25 PM

51. The great Phil Ochs, may he rest in peace

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:51 PM

28. Vinnie From Indy is so serious about automation

that he doesn't even have an avatar!

Kidding, Vinnie. I agree with your OP. Universal basic income is going to be a requirement soon because technology is rapidly replacing a lot of human workers.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:52 PM

29. Airports are now doing this too.

I have tried to use the machines in the past, but each time had some problem. So I stopped using them altogether. The counter help doesn't like that, but I don't care. Traveling is stressful enough without the added burden of trying to "intuit" what the programme wants from me.

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Response to Haggis for Breakfast (Reply #29)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:10 PM

41. The one that drives me up the wall . . .

is the new soft drink machine that requires a Doctorate in Computer Science to get a cup of ice and soft drink. I'm 73, very computer literate. I've watched other folks younger than I trying to figure out the goddam thing and finally giving up, asking the counter people to get a soda for them.

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Response to Roadside Attraction (Reply #41)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:46 PM

62. I hate those, too

I usually on drink water and won't pay for bottled water. So there I am pushing a dozen or so buttons just to fill my courtesy water cup. Since those are usually tiny, I have to do it more than once per meal.

It's been enough of a hassle I've cut down on going to what had been my favorite fast food place.

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Response to Roadside Attraction (Reply #41)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:35 PM

84. You mean the Freestyle machine?

I’ve never had a problem with it unless my drink of choice is out.

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Response to Roadside Attraction (Reply #41)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:04 PM

157. is that the one that does like 5000 types of soda flavors?

drives me crazy too.
Just when you get it going, if it stops for even half a second you have to start all over again.
aaaaaarrrrrrrgggghhhhh

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:52 PM

30. I'm more shocked that the employee didn't realise she was hastening her own

unemployment by promoting automation. Her ignorance, the lack of critical thinking skills, is the result of decades of deliberate educational failure. She is the perfect, mindless corporate worker, and not nearly as useful as an automated kiosk.

What subsistence role will she, and the millions in a barely functioning labor pool just like her, ever find in the future?

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Response to procon (Reply #30)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:32 PM

53. Well said! And which Democratic politicians are addressing this?

I've seen a few touch upon it. Elon Musk has extolled the necessity of a universal basic income.... but when do we start to address the simple aesthetic truth (which Marx and William Morris of the 19th century once spoke of), that we are letting the machine alienate us from our work, the land and each other.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:53 PM

31. I worked for a tax preparers office

Crunching numbers for client tax forms. They installed an upgraded computer program into their computer network. And they let me go. I lost my job to a computer program.



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Response to apkhgp (Reply #31)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:36 PM

55. You have my sympathy, but...

Crunching numbers is what computers do best... surely you saw that one coming all the way from 1980.

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Response to apkhgp (Reply #31)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 06:27 AM

97. Me too. But I was phased out years ago (bookkeeping). I

ended up in Janitorial. Everyone needs me, and so far, no machine or program can replace me

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Response to Luz (Reply #97)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:03 PM

156. You went from bookkeeping to janitorial?

THAT's a book deal! (If you write it with even half the saucey pithy flavor of some of these DU posts).

Do it! ....or an article?

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Response to DemocracyMouse (Reply #156)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 01:25 PM

170. I have worked for ICE, DOD, Homeland security and now for

the IRS. I can pass any background check, so I get a little better salary than most. I work 7-4 M-F, with all govt days off, plus 1 wk paid vacation. Plus, I work alone with no supervisor. Its really a great job.

I also keep my eyes/ears open, and my mouth shut 😜 because, boy, do I hear tidbits.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:54 PM

32. We stopped at one today, too.

All the kiosks were full of people who were taking time trying to figure them out. We went up to the counter, ordered our stuff, and had it delivered to our table before some of them had completed their kiosk orders and found seats.

I just like dealing with people more. I don't like the double lane drive thrus our McDs have put in. I don't think they work any faster. They do mean that more cars are in the drive thru lanes than being stuck out on the road or stopping up their driveway.

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Response to woodsprite (Reply #32)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:45 AM

151. The Airport

is like this now. Buncha people gathered around a kiosk trying to figure out how to get it to work. Airport worker comes up, tries to get it to work. It's broken! Points people to line with a person.

At Heathrow recently people were fruitlessly pushing bottons trying to get the baggage self-check-in to work. Finally a woman comes up and leads us to an unattended baggage check-in, gets behind the counter, and proceeds to check us in the old-fashioned way. Took seconds per flyer by someone who knew what she was doing. Even if the self-check had been working, it would have taken each person far longer to figure it out than it did this woman who already knew how it worked and could just check us in. It's not about speeding the customer on his way, it's about shifting the labor from the paid employee to the unpaid customer.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 09:54 PM

33. The automation was supposed to be good. There used to be articles in Popular Science and

other publications bragging about how great it was going to be. We were supposed to see the 30 hour work week or even better. The idea was that if we didn't need everyone to work full-time, that was going to be okay. You would earn a livable wage for part-time work. Of course we weren't supposed to give all the money to a handful of people at the top.

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Response to brewens (Reply #33)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:00 PM

35. It's good for the bottom line.

But not so much for the average human worker.

But that's the way everything is going and there's no turning back.
The world changes and the only thing you can do is be flexible and try to navigate your way through unfamiliar waters.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:03 PM

36. Plenty Of Stupid & Ignorant Americans

 

It's taken me 52 years of life to realize this fact, but I finally do. Most people are just too busy living their day to day lives to think things through.

I find your experience funny in a way. Did a light bulb appear above their head when you mentioned that this computer might someday result in their job being taken away? They sound like a taxi cab driver who wants to cheer a self driving car, until someone tells them that self driving car may hurt their livelihood. Lightbulb!

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:08 PM

37. Recent WashPost article

Within the last couple of days, the Washington Post carried an article describing a huge warehouse operation in China, similar to Amazon -- people order online and their orders are filled from this warehouse.

There are only four human employees -- everything else is done by robots.

The CEO of the company is quoted as saying his plan is to do away entirely with human employees.

Part of the article addressed the impact of automation on jobs in the US -- there was a prediction that 30% of all US jobs could be lost to automation by 2030.

It's not just robots and ordering kiosks as in McD -- it's also about artificial intelligence that's smarter than some people.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:14 PM

42. [shakes head]

imo, most people have no frickin idea what's coming in the way of jobs eliminated by software and machines driven by software...

I've read credible articles that estimate 25-35% of all jobs we see today will be eliminated in 10 years.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:24 PM

50. The Giant Eagle automated checkout voice is RUDE and PUSHY!

I don't know why the management at these places think they have the right to insult us and push us around, when they are not even our employers. They have no idea how their employees boost their business with friendly help, advice, and social interaction.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:38 PM

56. I had that exact same conversation

at a grocery store. When I lived in Wichita, the Dillons chain put those self-serve checkout machines in the stores around 2003, mainly replacing the express lanes. Even if I only needed a few items, I would use a human checkout line. Often, the cashier would tell me that I could have used the self-checkout. I always asked if I would receive either a paycheck or a discount for essentially becoming a Dillons cashier. They would said no, but it might be faster. I then said, "you know, that is YOUR job being replaced there." Far too often, they would suddenly get very quiet and I could tell by their expression that they hadn't yet realized that.

Management was obviously telling cashiers to push the new machines. Whenever I had the chance, I told them I would always rather deal with a human.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:42 PM

59. Automation may cost jobs but

There are other factors that will offset it. Things change it won’t be the end of the world. People are always scared of change and new technologies. I love kiosk and self checkout. The less I have to deal with people the better. And I can’t wait for self driving cars and automated trucks.

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Response to LostinRed (Reply #59)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:54 PM

67. If you don't mind me asking

Do you work? Because if you have a job right now the odds are very high that in the not terribly distant future your position will be outsourced to robots. And when that happens how will we pull money out of those automated tellers or buy groceries in the self check-out line? I mean eventually our dental hygienists and orthopedic surgeons will be freaking robots.

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Response to JenniferJuniper (Reply #67)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 10:49 AM

138. Yes I work

im Not worried about a robot taking my job.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:44 PM

61. I assume you don't use automatic tellers either???

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:50 PM

64. I'm sure the buggy whip industry raised a similar stink in 1890 or so as well.

Either adapt, or get left behind.



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Response to Tarc (Reply #64)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:11 AM

104. Thanks for this, people don't understand how technology works. Nt

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Response to USALiberal (Reply #104)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:35 AM

149. That's The Damn Truth

Even the kids admit my Mother's newest super duper cable remote takes five clicks to do what one used to do.

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Response to Tarc (Reply #64)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 10:45 AM

137. Yep.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:50 PM

65. We are becoming alienated...

from wealth, from creative work, from each other and from the land and other animals.... Just as Marx predicted.

William Morris, another 19th century visionary, offered an antidote, which the maker movement and artisan food culture stems from: a return to cottage industry.

The implication for DU? We should not just be whining about Republicans, but figuring out (together) what Democratic policies can foster a less alienated, decentralized future.

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Response to DemocracyMouse (Reply #65)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:58 PM

70. I'd love to hear everyone's thoughts on William Morris and cottage industry

That is, how do we get there? Should a universal basic income be part of this vision?

(But please don't just react to UBI... the real question is, how do we address, in a deep, infrastructural sense, the problem machines and AI pose to our psyches, the aesthetics of daily life in the face of machine-induced alienation)

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Response to DemocracyMouse (Reply #70)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:09 PM

77. UBI is part of our future.

Automation is just not going to go away. It will expand.

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Response to DemocracyMouse (Reply #65)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:14 PM

80. Ironically, I think automation will help get us there

I think automation will solve a lot of big and global problems, leaving people to focus more on local jobs that are much harder to automate.

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Response to DemocracyMouse (Reply #65)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:44 PM

86. Taking orders at McDonalds isn't exactly "creative work".

That ship sailed in the 50s and 60s when Mickey Ds replaced the local diner or cafe or cooking at home yourself.

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Response to meadowlander (Reply #86)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:11 PM

159. So legislate the f'k out of the chain stores.

Use our democratic leverage, people. Any township with a soul and self respect forbids chain stores like McDonalds. They know they gradually suck all the funds out of town, not to mention induce a cultural coma.

We have to actively block corporations like a cancer – or at least regulate their approach. They are quite often like weeds choking off the sunlight for more delicate, humane, local businesses.

And you say you don't like some funky old local businesses? Teach architecture, lighting design and other retail arts in our schools!

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:55 PM

68. We've been automating and improving productivity for ages yet there are still jobs

It's been happening like gangbusters since the invention of the assembly line. Computers have just brought a different kind of way and scale to improve productivity.

Automation brings change but they will never stop finding ways to make us work for our survival.

What I think our society lacks is a good way to transition people from the obsolete jobs to the new jobs. I believe in retraining and continuing education, and think companies, especially ones that lay people off due to automation, should pay for this.

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Response to unblock (Reply #68)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:01 PM

71. See above directly above

Ironically, this chat technology is alienating even THIS enlightened community from each other.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 10:56 PM

69. I wonder how many on this thread filled their

Tank at a self-serve station, or stopped at an ATM to get some cash and gave not a second thought of whose job was replaced for their convenience.

But McDonalds????? How dare they!

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Response to DrDan (Reply #69)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:04 PM

73. See my comments about Marx and Wm. Morris above

(I'm even automating my dialogue by curtting and pasting this response)

Ironically, this chat technology is alienating even THIS enlightened community from each other.

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Response to DemocracyMouse (Reply #73)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:07 PM

75. Let me explain: I made a statement about alienation....

...and the solution: decentralized cottage industry....

...and no one seemed to care.

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Response to DemocracyMouse (Reply #75)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:14 PM

79. ... and because you don't....

...but because DU is designed to simulate community, not to replace actual human-to-human conversation...

... it's just all too easy to click "reply" and watch ourselves get posted online... without weaving previous thoughts into our response...

So one more time (if you aren't annoyed by my demand that we treat each post likecit matters)... Any thoughts on Marx and Morris and cottage industry (with UBI backing it up), as a system that gives a high quality of life a fighting chance?

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:07 PM

76. There's a popular graphic knocking the $15 minimum showing those kiosks

They are looking at digitizing some of the cooking as well.

I'm most markets, even offering better than average fast food wages (most Macs here start at $11 and some offer signing bonuses), they still are perpetually shorthanded. I don't think it's going to put lots out of work. Also, self checkout lines at big box stores tend to be slower than lines with people in my experience.

Web retail like Amazon will continue to kill brick & mortar retail. It's cheaper square footage; there is less leakage to theft; there's less leakage to cashier error; marketing is dirt cheap.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:11 PM

78. I had the opposite reaction from a chase banker recently

I mentioned that it was convenient i could open an account online, and he began extolling the virtues of and helpfulness of working with a banker to do that. Automatiom without ubi will be a very bad thing.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:17 PM

81. OK, I'm quitting Facebook and DU.

Not one person responded to my comments above.

This "community" is not real.

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Response to DemocracyMouse (Reply #81)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:20 PM

82. Wait... spoke too soon... one person did respond way above.

(It's still way too automated!)

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:21 PM

83. My neice is a shift manager at McDonalds. She says they are always short on staff

now. She tells me roughly only 1 out of 3 applicants pass the drug test. After they interview what is left they are lucky if half the ones they hire actually show up for work. Recently the McDonalds I go to most days didn't open until 9am one day because only 3 people showed up for work that morning. There best most reliable employees are the older people 65 years or older.

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Response to doc03 (Reply #83)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:48 PM

166. They drug test at McDonalds!

wow

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Response to fescuerescue (Reply #166)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 04:19 PM

179. They do here nt

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Thu Sep 13, 2018, 11:48 PM

88. Maybe she wasn't planning to spend the rest of her life working at McDonalds

and doesn't really care that her job will be replaced by a machine.

It's not like it's exactly a soul stimulating vocation.

I used to live in China when they had zero unemployment. They achieved it by inventing pointless jobs for people. You could go to any park in the city and see people on their hands and knees cutting the grass with scissors instead of using a lawnmower.

We can respond to increased automation by embracing it and then applying any efficiencies to bettering people's lives, letting them find more meaningful and interesting work for themselves and still providing a safety net/basic income or we can cling to pointless, inefficient, soul-crushing work just so we can feel smug about not giving any money away for free to people who haven't "earned" it..

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:27 AM

90. I'm more annoyed that now I have to wait for my coffee order

beind a half dozen full meal orders. (I don't use the kiosks, but they still stick the order in the queue, rather than grabbing a cup and filling it.)

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:36 AM

91. I worked at a place where the employees were required to train some folks from India

Took a month or so and then they went back to India and all the Americans who had did the training were laid off permanently.

They knew it was coming all along.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 01:54 AM

92. It's a mixed bag and when I don't have many items I will use automation.

This week I went to the Dollar General to pick up 7-8 items at about 2:00 in the afternoon. There were two employees in the store with one of the clerks checking out customers. There was a line of a half-dozen customers with some having full shopping carts so I can see that it will take at least ten minutes and probably fifteen minutes before I can complete my supposedly "quick" trip to the store. The other clerk walks back to the area behind the counter and passes the first clerk along with the line of customers, but instead of opening up another register to thin out the line she goes to the back office. I spoke up about it and the first clerk admonished me saying that the other clerk should stay in the back office because the second clerk was on her lunch break even though she hadn't even started eating. The woman behind me in line also chews me out saying that I was impatient and rude (neglecting the fact that the second clerk was rude by ignoring all of the customers instead of trying to get us out quicker). I was very tempted to tell that lady that she shouldn't judge me and she should mind her own damn business, but I didn't.

I have very apparent breathing difficulties, the front of my T-shirt was damp with perspiration, and I also have lower back problems so standing in long lines is a major irritant to me--plus there is nowhere that I can sit or anything that I can even lean against while waiting in line. I was always taught that the customer comes first (particularly when I was a pizza delivery driver) and I've had to interrupt my lunch breaks even when I worked in an office environment so in a retail environment what occurred is unacceptable to me. There was no consideration for the amount of time that I spent in the store or my own physical ailments, yet alone the rest of the customers. So in addition to my quick trip for groceries, I also came home with a guilt trip because I spoke up. I reluctantly went back to the same store today and saw the same two clerks--they looked at me as though I should apologize for that earlier trip, but there was no way that I was going to say that I was sorry. If they want to talk about me behind my back after I leave then that's okay--it's not like I go to Dollar General to socialize with the clerks.

That experience (and others that are similar) makes me understand why some companies use automation. I really don't want to see anybody lose their jobs, but considering that I really didn't get any customer service anyways there is no way I can blame a company for using automated technology.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 03:29 AM

93. In a supermarket in England

People were ringing up expensive produce like avocados or asparagus and keying it in as carrots. Supermarket figured it out when inventory discovered they were selling more carrots then they actually had in stock.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 06:19 AM

96. I went through the same thing with a girl at walmart

They put in the self scanners, scan and bag your own items then pay with debit or credit card. It only lasted a few months . It was removed I heard because people figured out too many ways to steal.

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Response to blueinredohio (Reply #96)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 09:51 AM

126. "Anyone who pays for more than half of their stuff in self checkout is a total moron"

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2018/03/stealing-from-self-checkout/550940/
The Banana Trick and Other Acts of Self-Checkout Thievery
“Anyone who pays for more than half of their stuff in self checkout is a total moron.”
Rene Chun
March 2018 Issue

Self-checkout theft has become so widespread that a whole lingo has sprung up to describe its tactics. Ringing up a T-bone ($13.99/lb) with a code for a cheap ($0.49/lb) variety of produce is “the banana trick.” If a can of Illy espresso leaves the conveyor belt without being scanned, that’s called “the pass around.” “The switcheroo” is more labor-intensive: Peel the sticker off something inexpensive and place it over the bar code of something pricey. Just make sure both items are about the same weight, to avoid triggering that pesky “unexpected item” alert in the bagging area.

How common are self-scanning scams? If anonymous online questionnaires are any indication, very common. When Voucher Codes Pro, a company that offers coupons to internet shoppers, surveyed 2,634 people, nearly 20 percent admitted to having stolen at the self-checkout in the past. More than half of those people said they gamed the system because detection by store security was unlikely. A 2015 study of self-checkouts with handheld scanners, conducted by criminologists at the University of Leicester, also found evidence of widespread theft. After auditing 1 million self-checkout transactions over the course of a year, totaling $21 million in sales, they found that nearly $850,000 worth of goods left the store without being scanned and paid for. ....

Whether out of social responsibility or frustration with shrinkage, some retailers, including Albertsons, Big Y Supermarket, Pavilions, and Vons, have scaled back or eliminated self-scanning, at least in some stores. But others continue to add it. Worldwide, self-checkout terminals are expected to number 325,000 by next year, up from 191,000 in 2013. In some places, meanwhile, the likelihood of being punished for petty shoplifting is decreasing. Even if a manager wants to press charges, many police departments can’t be bothered with supermarket theft. In 2012, for example, the Dallas Police Department enacted a new policy: Officers would no longer routinely respond to shoplifting calls for boosts amounting to less than $50. In 2015, the threshold was raised yet again, to $100.

Perhaps it’s not surprising that some people steal from machines more readily than from human cashiers. “Anyone who pays for more than half of their stuff in self checkout is a total moron,” reads one of the more militant comments in a Reddit discussion on the subject. “There is NO MORAL ISSUE with stealing from a store that forces you to use self checkout, period. THEY ARE CHARGING YOU TO WORK AT THEIR STORE.” Barbara Staib, the director of communications of the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention, believes that self-checkouts tempt people who are already predisposed to shoplifting, by allowing them to rationalize their behavior. “Most shoplifters are in fact otherwise law-abiding citizens. They would chase behind you to return the $20 bill you dropped, because you’re a person and you would miss that $20.” A robot cashier, though, changes the equation: It “gives the false impression of anonymity,” Staib says. “This apparently empowers people to shoplift.”

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 06:27 AM

98. I don't understand how people can live their lives with their heads in the sand (Trump voter).

Automation is killing low-skilled jobs. Sometimes I think the Internet is the worse thing that was ever created. Some people live their lives on Facebook and rarely look up from their phones (I nearly hit one who walked into the street the other day). The local grocery where I shop has some automated stations now. I resisted using them at first, pointing out to the living and breathing cashiers that automated checkouts would replace them. No one seemed to be too interested or care, so I've started using the things. If the employees don't care, why should I?

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Response to Vinca (Reply #98)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:08 AM

103. I mean, it's unfortunate for the people losing jobs, but automation isn't going to stop.

You aren't going to see grocery stores, McDonalds, etc., taking out their self checkout machines and hiring more people in place. The footprint of the machines is only going to grow.

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Response to bearsfootball516 (Reply #103)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:17 PM

161. Like the Borg..... Self-respecting towns BLOCK chain stores from their downtowns.

But we have to become more civically involved. Instead of doing Facebook and DU we should be serting time aside to go to the next community meeting.

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Response to Vinca (Reply #98)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:12 AM

105. Do you use ATMs? Nt

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Response to USALiberal (Reply #105)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:24 AM

108. I have never used an ATM in my life...

...and I'm 66 years old.

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Response to louis c (Reply #108)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:29 AM

109. Interesting. Well, technology will always change the workforce. No stopping it. Nt

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Response to USALiberal (Reply #105)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:30 AM

110. We all use ATMs and pump our own gas

(unless you live in New Jersey) but that isn't really the point.

This isn't about the user, who in my neighborhood has no choice but to pump his or her own gas as any full serves are few and far between and often closed early in the day.

Robotics aren't just taking the jobs of low wage earners. Robots and computer systems are going to take nearly all our jobs, because there really aren't many jobs that robots won't be able to do - from car mechanic to truck driver to plumber to teacher to surgeon. And it's going to happen fast.

What then? All economic power will shift to the robot owners and until living wages are put in place by governments we will be heading for very dark days.

This isn't about McDonald's kiosks. Much more is going on, even if we can't fully see it out in the open just yet.

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Response to JenniferJuniper (Reply #110)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:57 AM

113. I don't

So, it's not all.

I have never used an ATM and I go to a full service station near my home. Only if I'm near empty, far from home and have no choice, do I use self-service. So, I use full service more than 90% of the time.

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Response to louis c (Reply #113)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 08:51 AM

117. That's nice but

this isn't about you.

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Response to JenniferJuniper (Reply #110)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 09:15 AM

121. You cannot stop progress....

What do you do? Pass laws to stop technology enhancements?

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Response to USALiberal (Reply #121)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:04 AM

141. No you can't. But

governments need to start planning for massive levels of unemployment in the not too distant future as robotics begin to replace many white collar and blue collar jobs.

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Response to USALiberal (Reply #105)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:06 AM

142. I do, but I haven't noticed any decrease in the number of tellers working in the bank.

It's more of a convenience thing than a staff-reducing thing. At least where I live.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:17 AM

106. It took 2 people to run the kiosk at the McD's in Augusta Maine

One to show you how it worked - and it was NOT user friendly.

And one to bring you your food.

I would never use it.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 07:23 AM

107. I try to never, ever use automated services.

I will not shop at a grocery store unless there is a live option, and I always use the live option, even if it makes my shopping longer. What fools we are to not help each other by refusing to fall for the destruction of our own and each others' jobs.

I don't even use self service gas stations unless it's an emergency. I buy my gas 90% of the time from a full service station near my home.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 09:46 AM

124. Those kiosks are a pain in the ass to use.

I don't want to have to think that much just to get a cup of coffee.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 09:53 AM

127. At the McDonald's near me

the "cashiers" aren't just "cashiers". They are also going back to the food prep area and pulling baskets of fries out of the oil and shoving them into the paper holders or sticking stuff in the oven, helping to put together an earlier order, and then hustling back to the front to take another order.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 09:56 AM

128. I never use the automated checkouts because I strongly believe

people should take precedence for jobs. Sadly, I have had (invariably) young clerks direct me to use the automated check-outs, and when I try to explain that I’m deliberately on line with a human checker, and my reasoning is I’m trying to save (their) jobs, they seemingly couldn’t care less, and in fact are annoyed. A losing battle.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 10:08 AM

130. There are some days I *really* appreciate self-check out.

I like it as an option when I just need three items and don't have to stand in lines of full carts.

Similarly - if I go into McDonald's and just want a beverage or a shake when there's a large crowd, ordering my drink on a kiosk without standing in line will probably get it to me faster if the staff is on the ball and knocking out tiny no-cook orders first (especially since most of the time now they just hand you a cup and you fill it yourself). Since a lot of rush hour food service nowadays involves waiting in line for a cashier then waiting for your food, bypassing one of those and sending your order directly to the prep line is a good thing.

The cashiers shouldn't give grief about it though. If there's nobody in line they should be happy to take care of the customers.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 10:36 AM

135. If automation ultimately improves her situation, then it is a positive.

The problem that we have is that we - society in general - are not considering the effects of automation and how it can be used to benefit everyone. Right now, the automation that is being created through everyone's work, is being used to benefit owners. People who get to own automated systems, use them for their own benefit, often to the detriment of other people.

Automation can be a positive thing for everybody, but only if we design it with that goal.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 10:57 AM

139. I used to love to watch the show "How It's Made" on TLC,

which shows clever methods of putting various manufactured products together. Now that I know the economic costs, it’s kind of chilling.

When I was younger, I briefly considered becoming an industrial designer, which is one of the few bright job prospects of the future. I’m glad I didn’t. I’d be making money by helping screw workers out of their jobs, and I don’t think I could live with that guilt.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:00 AM

140. I always use the drive thru at those places...

And I've started using the order ahead app because I have never gotten a wrong order that way.

YMMV.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:22 AM

145. My daughter's Safeway has had 4 self check out stands for several years.

One checker can do the work of about 4. I use the human check out system just to keep the numbers up for employment. One thing that keeps more from using the self check are rules about booze and smokes. Have to have a checker.... I'm sure that will change in time.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:25 AM

147. Perhaps not everyone working at McDonalds is looking to

make a career of it.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:29 AM

148. I don't work there, so I'm not going to process their order for them.nt

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 11:36 AM

150. I refuse to use them, i go to person everytime, everyone should.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:10 PM

158. I refuse to use those kiosks, or self-checkout at stores, or anything that replaces a human

in the service industry.

I can see ordering ahead on an app, but I don't understand why one would walk into a restaurant and then do all the work for the corporation right there. Fucking stupid.

On the other hand, if one has a complicated order, the kiosk can avoid the issue of getting a fucking moron taking your order.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:16 PM

160. There used to be a bank in my grocery store.

Small, but able to do most bank stuff, and there was an ATM. So I used
that bank. They paid 0.01% on my savings account. I took my money out
and into an 0n-line account that pays 1.85%. 185 times more interest.
A no brainer.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:18 PM

162. Do you avoid wheat threshed by those satanic automated threshers?

Real wheat is threshed by real human farmhands. Think of all the jobs they'll lose if we have a machine do it!

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Response to Recursion (Reply #162)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 02:50 PM

177. Yes, and I only wear clothes made from hand-picked, hand-spun cotton knitted by an actual person

who makes a living wage and is over 18. Every T-shirt costs $1800 but it's worth it to show the middle finger to the spinning jenny.

How dare we use machines to deprive people of meaningful, fulfilling work like picking cotton?

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:25 PM

163. People should not fight to keep jobs alive that are no longer relevant

Automation is the future and there's no stopping it. The answer is not to avoid it but instead enact policies to protect those impacted. Universal Basic Income would be a nice start.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 12:26 PM

164. For me, it's often about speed. I do enjoy using the kiosks.

There have been plenty of times I walked in and there were two or three people already in line. I'm a pretty quick person and I know what I want, so I can usually use the kiosk and get my order in before even the first person in line is done ordering. At worst, he gets done before me, but then there would still be two more people ahead of me if I had gotten in line.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 01:36 PM

171. I hate the kiosks..

However, I love the McDonald's app. Both of them, you do your own order. But with the app you get to sit down or even order ahead of time and you get great discounts. Sorry for her job but I like the discount. Just about every time I go I get a $1 sandwich.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 01:39 PM

172. That's pretty funny/sad

Earlier this summer I went to a Panera's, and they had a kiosk. It wasn't particularly intuitive, and they knew that, since there was an employee watching over the use of the kiosk.

I didn't have the same conversation as noted in the OP, but I have to say, I didn't like the kiosk. Just let me talk to a person, get order what I want and then wait for my name to be called. How difficult - or costly - can that be?

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Response to matt819 (Reply #172)

Sat Sep 15, 2018, 09:22 AM

192. I'm terms of payroll, it adds up quick.

Buy 3 machines for $5,000 each, that’s $15,000.

Pay three people $10,000 per year to be cashiers, that’s $30,000.

And you only have to pay the machine cost one time. So after five years, the machines only cost you $15,000. The humans cost you $150,000. Multiply that over the thousands and thousands of McDonald’s over the country...you’re talking about saving billions in a very short period of time.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 02:06 PM

176. Tax and robot bill

The tax bill which said jobs bill but it really was for automation and robots. Before someone says but that will create jobs, the reality is it will not. One person can remotely do hundreds if not thousands. Walmarts has opened almost completely automated store in WV. Wendys has fully automated store. I wonder when no one has a job who do they think is going to buy their stuff?

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 04:23 PM

180. At my local McD's you have to wade past a pack of teenage girls...

Last edited Sat Sep 15, 2018, 11:26 PM - Edit history (1)

...who are trying to get you to "Come over here and let me show you how easy it is."

Gross.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 05:23 PM

183. Progress is inevitable. Remember all those buggy makers that are out of work?

No, because that was a long time ago. They went out of business and lost their jobs because of automobiles.

All those typists lost their jobs, too. There used to be huge rooms full of them. Now, one person with a computer can do all that work.

And so on. The transition is rough, but new jobs crop up, as humans progress. This means that workers will need to learn different skills in different fields.

It has always been this way. I assume it will always be this way, or we'll die. Humans shape the world around them, to make things accessible, easier, faster, more efficient...that's what we do. It's part of being human.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 06:42 PM

185. AI, from what I read is more threatening.

AI is being introduced on a wider basis. I'm not saying we're in for Skynet and the Terminator. At least, not very soon.

AI is getting as good, if not better, in diagnosis illnesses. It's starting to do coding now instead of people. I'm not shouting the sky is falling and my hair isn't on fire about it. But it's going to have a much larger impact than anything else since the beginning of industrial revolution.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Original post)


Response to Name removed (Reply #188)

Fri Sep 14, 2018, 08:48 PM

189. To be honest, my response was more of a reflex rather than an agenda.

It was early in the morning and I wanted some coffee. She was way too enthusiastic about the kiosks and my lack of caffeine probably unleashed my questioning nature resulting in the thought provoking question to this young lady.

She did say when I was leaving that she had not thought about the kiosks in that way before.

I completely understand that the corporation wants her to be excited about the kiosks and they tell her it is a wonderful thing.

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Reply #189)

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