Can Automation Save the World? The Impact of Automation in 2020 (Part 1)

Can Automation Save the World? The Impact of Automation in 2020 (Part 1)
Can Automation Save the World? The Impact of Automation in 2020 (Part 1)
Between the COVID-19 pandemic, economic slowdowns and civil unrest, the world is going through a time that can seem chaotic and uncertain. But tthe world of automation has been abuzz with fascinating activity that is providing solutions. Social distancing requirements and efforts to facilitate remote workers have called for automation to play a starring role in making these things feasible for many organizations.   Here are a few instances where automation is playing a significant role in facilitating a more harmonious world in the future.
 

Is COVID-19 Speeding Up the Human-Automation Transition?

COVID-19 has had a lasting impact on our society and way of life, but the increased necessity of automation in facilitating continued productivity in a distanced or remote workplace may have a lasting impact as well. In his Forbes article, Simon Chandler looked at how coronavirus has been forcing companies to speed automation efforts and replace COVID-vulnerable human workers, with alternatives that include robotics and automated processes. 

Chandler cites a Forrester report claiming that, “Many companies are set to invest more in automation than in rehiring in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, corroborating earlier reports that had claimed many businesses were already planning to accelerate their automation strategies.”

There have been questions for years about what impact automation would have on jobs, but as Chandler shared, the impact of this virus will likely have us finding out sooner rather than later. The benefits of automation in this COVID-19 era have been made clear. What is still unclear is whether these benefits will be spread out evenly among the people or if the gap between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ will widen. Yet automation continues to bring its benefits in other areas as well, and this time to the whole world.


Many are seeing rapid advances in automation in the workplace since COVID-19 restrictions have begun
 

Can Automation Save the World's Honeybees?

If you have followed the plight of the honeybee at all, you probably know that their numbers have been declining, posing critical threats to agriculture and natural pollination processes across the world. Yet the automation of data collection and analysis is facilitating an effort to keep closer tabs on the honeybee population.

The combined effort by SAS and Appalachian State University is using beehive sound and machine learning to help crowdsource the global monitoring effort. The goal is to monitor the population of hives around the world for drops or threats to the health of the queens. Through this effort, they aim to have the information to quickly notify local beekeepers of threats to their hives and help stabilize the honeybee population in the long term, extracting continuous information regarding which conditions facilitate the healthiest beehives, and acting accordingly.

Automation efforts do not just happen at a global or economic scale, however. As many innovative individuals continue to show us, automation is having a great impact on the home life as well.


Appalachain State and SAS are using machine learning and analytics to monitor the bee population


Automating Around the House During COVID 19

Automation around the house is nothing new, as smart home systems have brought new levels of control to technophile homeowners. Still, the COVID-19 era has forced plenty of engineers and automation enthusiasts to be stuck at home during the past few months, and several have used this time to find tasks around the house to automate even further, with the aim of making their list of household chores a little easier. One creative Reddit user leveraged their technological skills to facilitate an automated dinner time for their four-legged friends. 



In fact, several Reddit-posting engineers seemed to use to their time on projects related to food. While the impact of these automation projects on their home lives is still unknown, we can see that automation has been accelerating innovation at every level this year.

At the current time, we still don’t fully realize the impact that automation will have on our lives or on our jobs, or on our planet. What we do know is that the impact is rapidly growing and has only continued to accelerate during the COVID-19 era. In spite of the global uncertainty, new products and technologies continue to be released. Innovation continues to thrive, and automation continues to be at the center of it. Automation.com will continue to follow the latest stories of what organizations and individuals are doing, the products they are developing, and the impact they are having both in the industry and around the world.
 

About The Author


Cory Fogg has served as Content Editor for Automation.com for the last four years, covering the latest advances in technology and automation trends. 

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