Brave new world

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This week we got a glimpse of the first “burger flipping” robot. It was quite amazing and is programmed to produce the perfectly grilled burger every single time.

Two weeks ago when I asked the woman at Walmart where they had moved the order pick-up desk, she walked me back to the front of the store, and voila’ – right before the check-out lanes was a gigantic new machine that stretched to the ceiling and beyond. We walked up to the computer screen and typed in my order number. Then, above me on a monitor we watched as it found my order, placed it in a chute and sent it down to my waiting arms. The door opened and I picked up my package and exited the store shaking my head.

According to a young man in charge of the machinery, it is the first of two in AZ and only the 10th nationwide. The sales clerk who had walked me to the delivery system also added that instead of losing jobs, they had added two new sales people and were adding people to work on the equipment and the delivery system above us. She smiled broadly as she explained that it was creating jobs.

In France, two years ago, I used the new ordering system at McDonald’s.(don’t tell anyone). Using the icon photos of food choices, I selected my burger and drink, paid with my debit card and before I could step aside my number was being called. As far as I know there were still cooks behind those walls, but apparently that is changing soon.

We have to embrace this new technology and hope like heck our computer systems never fail. Already young people behind the counters can’t count out change without the aid of the screen in front of them. If computerized cash registers crash, there is no way to purchase an item even when paying cash. It is worrisome to this old lady for sure.

And yet, it is going to happen whether we accept it or whether we fight it. And fighting, I find, is so exhausting.

Luckily, the 3rd and 4th graders where I volunteer are currently being taught coding. By the time they are in middle school or high school, they will all be computer code literate. They don’t need penmanship any longer, but they do need the skills of every aspect of our technological world. Let’s be thankful for them. In ten years, they will be running our new world.

2 thoughts on “Brave new world

  1. JB

    The world is changing in front of our eyes- driverless cars, pilotless flights, unmanned kiosks, etc. What’s next? Would like to touch bases and discuss. Your thoughts?

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    1. cwesala Post author

      good to hear from you. i’m looking for an island where i can put my head in the sand. ha let me think on this. just back from OR and headed to MN in a few days. talk soon.

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