Thursday, July 6, 2017

Of Course It's Slow Now

The thing to remember here is that automation (electrified experience retrieval) is, by its command operational nature, the very essence of repetitive precision; even with changes in conditions. Unfortunately, the very frail, flawed, individuals who organize the commands, and the sets of conditionals with which to apply them, and who represent where the rubber meets the road in getting automated systems encoded properly for the silicon switches to make use of; those folks can only do the best they can to set up such systems of supposed repetitive precision.

Then there is the fact now that change, and disruption, are both loved, and hated simultaneously, even as they increase, despite how we feel about it. Which means, in particular focus, that the conditions with which our automated process was set up to handle, are continually upset by the new set of expectations; so, even if the not so perfect coders got things exceptionally right for a change, the repetitive precision is broken.

God how I hated this sort of thing when I was doing business automation for Health Services Northwest (a fairly large sized, regional remote billing organization, formed as a partnership between the Providence and Swedish hospital groups). We'd no sooner get a host of applications set up to get, store, process, and then distribute the results of, patient charges, when, without notice, various combinations of changes in data format, and/or processing requirements, would suddenly appear to break an essential flow of information (and let me just tell you about how antsy people can get when many tens of millions of dollars a day in charges aren't flowing anymore).

The thing is, though, despite the problems, once you get a taste of how much more efficient electrified process can be, it's hard to not want more. And let's also not forget that the real problem with automation is not only that it can take jobs away directly, but that it also serves to seriously weaken the bargaining position of those who hold skills that can be automated. So in that sense, they don't have to take all of the jobs away from us to do us serious harm. Hence a substantial part of why so few have living wages anymore (in combination, of course with how easy it is to put production wherever the cheapest human labor is). All of these work together and the bottom line for the majority of working people is a bad deal. Throw in the fact of how unstable Capitalism is and you just have to wonder why the rest of us put up with it.


The thing about robots is, well, that they still need to be managed by humans.