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The use of machinery, rather than persons, to complete a task. Automation has become increasingly common with leaps in technology that occurred in the 19th and 20th centuries. Automation is thought to have increased efficiency; for example, it made mass production of goods possible. Critics contend, however, that it renders jobs obsolete, undermining workers and reducing people's knowledge of how to "do" things. See also: Industrial Revolution.


the use of mechanical or electrical machines such as robots to undertake frequently-repeated PRODUCTION processes to make them self-regulating, thus avoiding human intervention in these processes. Automation often involves high initial capital investment but, by reducing labour costs, cuts VARIABLE COST per unit.

Automation can be applied to mass production, PRODUCTION-LINE operations which are performed in a fixed sequence with high volumes but in a relatively inflexible way, where changes in the process to accommodate product changes are difficult and costly to implement (fixed automation). Automation can also be applied to lower volume BATCH PRODUCTION type operations, allowing in this case for greater flexibility in accommodating product changes by reprogramming the numerically-controlled machine's/robot's instructions to facilitate rapid changeovers (flexible or programmable automation). See FLEXIBLE MANUFACTURING SYSTEM.


the use of mechanical or electrical machines, such as robots, to undertake frequently repeated production processes to make them self-regulating, thus minimizing or eliminating the use of labour in these processes. Automation often involves high initial capital investment but, by reducing labour costs, cuts VARIABLE COST per unit. See FLEXIBLE MANUFACTURING SYSTEM, PRODUCTIVITY, TECHNOLOGICAL PROGRESSIVENESS, CAPITAL-LABOUR RATIO, MASS PRODUCTION, COMPUTER.
References in periodicals archive ?
But the point I really want to make clear is that the automated underwriting platform isn't just about automation.
To achieve the objective of triggering local public health response, automated electronic systems should consistently report cases that would have been reported by conventional methods.
Nor does everyone need automated functions, which are primarily suited for large data center environments.
Post the notice required by paragraph (b)(1) of this section in a prominent and conspicuous location on or at the automated teller machine; and
When scientists design automated systems, they hope to save lives.
In the end, the real hurdle to building automated highways may not be in the technology but in convincing lawmakers and the public that it wilt work reliably and safely.
The company has expanded its automated system from one to five assembly areas.
Another benefit of automated underwriting is that third-party data, such as credit and experience ratings can be included in the logic process, eliminating manual processes and reducing costs.
Shatinsky says the test data generated from the automated system will be used internally by Hoechst Celanese to monitor and improve the quality of the company's various polymer grades, which will result in more consistent resin products for molding customers.
It is imperative when implementing automated storage management that policies be an integral part of the process.

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