Inside Amazon's Smart Warehouse

Comixbooks

Fully [H]
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That is alot of items to process for an hour I mean Walmart they give you 60 boxes per hour and nobody can do that I know of.
But it's different taking items out of a box and stocking on the shelves. The boxing of items at Amazon looks like the hardest part.
 

bonehead123

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Hummm.... interesting that this video failed to mention the horrible working conditions in their warehouses....

Like the warehouses being so large while having a very limited number of restrooms and eating areas, 99% of which are located at the very outer perimeters of the buildings, meaning that the vast majority of employees who work in the middle of the building have to use all of their break or meal times just to go to & return from the restroom/eating areas, without ever getting any time for an actual break or meal period...

But at least they got in the part about the large numbers of accidents/injuries/ambulance visits, so there's that, hehehe :)
 

DukenukemX

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I like how the video starts off talking about automation and then later talks about the people and how they won't be sacked just yet. By their estimate it'll be 100% automated in 10 years, which is considered unrealistic to the estimator. With another thread talking about Tesla's self driving and now Amazon's automated warehouse, I think we're a good 10 years away from a massive unemployment issue. Which is different from the current massive unemployment issue. Me thinks we have an issue.
 

DukenukemX

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Hummm.... interesting that this video failed to mention the horrible working conditions in their warehouses....

Like the warehouses being so large while having a very limited number of restrooms and eating areas, 99% of which are located at the very outer perimeters of the buildings, meaning that the vast majority of employees who work in the middle of the building have to use all of their break or meal times just to go to & return from the restroom/eating areas, without ever getting any time for an actual break or meal period...

But at least they got in the part about the large numbers of accidents/injuries/ambulance visits, so there's that, hehehe :)
They did mention the part where if they make a mistake they could be fired. No more than 1 mistake per 2,200 boxes. I can't make one box without screwing up, let alone over 2,000 of them. The sooner Amazon gets automated the better is it for humanity.
 

ManofGod

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They did mention the part where if they make a mistake they could be fired. No more than 1 mistake per 2,200 boxes. I can't make one box without screwing up, let alone over 2,000 of them. The sooner Amazon gets automated the better is it for humanity.

There is absolutely no logic in saying that the sooner Amazon get automated, the better it is for humanity. Working conditions are bad in Amazon warehouses because of the absolute greediness of Jeff Bezos and he will be no less greedy if everything becomes automated. Also, who is going to continue buying these products when there is no money being made to buy these products with?
 

OutOfPhase

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I don't like automation. Puts people out of a job.
There's a huge gray area for sure. I am with you in spirit, but I suspect a pedant could tease apart your sentence and say things like "sewing machines are nice though, right?".

Where do we draw lines?

I think this is going to be something we wrestle with as a civilization. When is max efficiency best, and when do we knowingly take a hit there to keep folks working? Or develop alternatives?

Very interesting topic. I do worry we are not prepared to have huge swaths of our population being out of work. Yes, "unskilled labor" and all that peril, but the reality is the entire country / world cannot be "skilled labor" either.

I do not have the answers, but am incredibly fascinated by this topic as someone who may like-it-or-not be a foot on the accelerator, given I spend most of my career making machines smarter.
 

Krenum

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Indeed it is. I have a brain. I'm not lazy. I went to community college and got a certificate in Industrial Maintenance: electrical engineering technologies. I make 100k.
Congratulations. What exactly do you work on?
 

ManofGod

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This is a great example of why I feel that automation and UBI are the way of the future. I'd rather Amazon fully automate their warehouse's, while paying people a UBI.

Nope to UBI, I am not going to take money from them so they can tell me how I should and should not live. I work hard and earn my money, everyone else should as well, if they can. And no, that does not mean allowing an employer to treat you like used garbage, either.
 

WorldExclusive

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Amazon gave warehouse tours here locally. Impressive to say the least.
And yes, it's a job were no social interaction is possible except between managers during your shift. Amazon gets the most out of each worker.
Each worker is spaced about 20ft apart while they stock or fill orders. The bots line up so fast there's no time to take a break, they work no-stop until their break/clock-out time.
 

GNUse_the_force

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This is a great example of why I feel that automation and UBI are the way of the future. I'd rather Amazon fully automate their warehouse's, while paying people a UBI.

"muhh socialism'" .. ;)

Nope to UBI, I am not going to take money from them so they can tell me how I should and should not live.

Cool, you don't have to but others will. Most likely hundreds of millions of others will (should automation come in so fast that they don't have time to adjust.) Peoples principles die off pretty quick when faced with the choice of sharing rotten garbage out of a bin with their children or accepting a universal system of income.

im not advocating it as the solution, but we appear to be reaching a point of no return with automation.
 
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1_rick

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Amazon gave warehouse tours here locally. Impressive to say the least.
And yes, it's a job were no social interaction is possible except between managers during your shift. Amazon gets the most out of each worker.
Each worker is spaced about 20ft apart while they stock or fill orders. The bots line up so fast there's no time to take a break, they work no-stop until their break/clock-out time.
Less Wrong had a story about the implications of this a few years ago. Can't find it now, unfortunately. But the idea was someone came up with software they started using at a fast food place, where it learned how long it took employees to do stuff, and then started "optimizing" so it had them working pretty much the entire shift. The bottom line went up so much that pretty much every company gradually started using it...and then everyone who couldn't keep up started getting laid off. In the end nearly the entire population of the US wound up in projects, guarded by robots to keep them from fighting, because the daily dole--sorry, UBI--didn't go far enough for anyone to be able to afford to go anywhere and do anything. Pretty grim. The alternative presented to the narrator at the end was a totalitarian's wet dream.
 

obs

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"muhh socialism'" .. ;)



Cool, you don't have to but others will. Most likely hundreds of millions of others will (should automation come in so fast that they don't have time to adjust.) Peoples principles die off pretty quick when faced with the choice of sharing rotten garbage out of a bin with their children or accepting a universal system of income.

im not advocating it as the solution, but we appear to be reaching a point of no return with automation.
This argument has been made ever since Ford invented assembly line. We can't automate because of the jobs! It's never been true. If anything, automation and increased productivity have made more people rise out of poverty.
 

GNUse_the_force

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This argument has been made ever since Ford invented assembly line. We can't automate because of the jobs! It's never been true. If anything, automation and increased productivity have made more people rise out of poverty.

I think you mistook my post with another, i was referencing UBI. Automation is here to stay, however many people today would gladly take an economic safety net rather than the alternative.
Honestly, im (cautiously) looking forward to drone delivery. It could be used to great effect in the delivery of medical supplies for instance, I expect the government will mandate a priority service based system at some point.
 
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LukeTbk

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This argument has been made ever since Ford invented assembly line. We can't automate because of the jobs! It's never been true. If anything, automation and increased productivity have made more people rise out of poverty.
There was great social unrest during transition phase of the industrial revolution thought.

It was not smooth and without issues, for example:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Unrest

Those production change brought with them giant social change has well and the current situation have some difference:
) In many case assembly line were building stuff that were not built before them (in significant numbers), like cars and so on and there was a wage explosion of factory worker that were farmer before that create demand that went with it and the increase in productivity was tier of jumps. Now in some case it is replacing stuff that were already made made men in a fully automated way (like cars)

) Ability to capture wealth from the increased productivity by the mass could be different, take when truck driving replaced horse cart and other drivers type of jobs, imagine if the transition would have been sudden, you needed what one 1 driver to deliver what 100 of the old system did ? And almost everyone was able to do it, a much more secure jobs, heated in the winter, climatised during the summer and so on, pure demand/offer mechanics could have seen a wage diminution for that jobs despite the giant boom in productivity, union made it possible for the workforce to capture a part of it and the worker incredible negotiation power as well, when trucker stopped moving the cost was a really big one, that ability could have changed for a lot of things versus the physical location jobs of the past.

) Automating more complex human brain workload do feel has potentially different than the steam, petrol and electricity revolution. Maybe history will repeat or massively echo itself again, with a lot of unrest and pain during the transition toward that new model that will end up like after the industrial revolution in a world with more jobs overall, but not necessarily, I am not sure it is a rule, but you could certainly be right the amount of work to be done hard to automatise (elderly and child care, nurse, etc...) because of the human element that you want in it, it just need a transition for them to be "paying" jobs would it be money or prestige.
 

HAL_404

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we Humans are, in reality, quite stupid. We are compared to sheep and often .... maybe think about that for a microsecond or two.

So Bezos replaced humans with machines and THEN it's called a Smart Warehouse ;)
 

Krenum

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This argument has been made ever since Ford invented assembly line. We can't automate because of the jobs! It's never been true. If anything, automation and increased productivity have made more people rise out of poverty.
And when the factories shut down because the jobs move over seas or the companies decide to employ illegals at lower wages, the rise in poverty begins anew.
 

DukenukemX

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This argument has been made ever since Ford invented assembly line. We can't automate because of the jobs! It's never been true. If anything, automation and increased productivity have made more people rise out of poverty.
That's because most people had a farm and didn't have to pay property taxes.
Nope to UBI, I am not going to take money from them so they can tell me how I should and should not live. I work hard and earn my money, everyone else should as well, if they can. And no, that does not mean allowing an employer to treat you like used garbage, either.
We can't agree on Unions. We can't agree on minimum wage. Americans can't even have a free health care system. Yet you're worried about the government having control over you? The elite already have control over the government. We Americans need to fix out democracy, not ignore it and hope the government doesn't control us because free money. How many people didn't accept the $1,400 check?
And when the factories shut down because the jobs move over seas or the companies decide to employ illegals at lower wages, the rise in poverty begins anew.
Which is when people go work at a dead end job like Amazon and work for 10 hours straight for 4 days. They don't keep employee's for more than 2 years, and they try to push you harder to fulfill orders. What a waste of human life. They know they'll have their warehouses nearly automated because I can't imagine having a turn over rate like that is going to last for Amazon.
 

obs

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And when the factories shut down because the jobs move over seas or the companies decide to employ illegals at lower wages, the rise in poverty begins anew.
Not really. US has offshored most of it's production yet somehow we manage near full employment. The same will be true what else gets moved. Jobs aren't static, and new ones always get created so long as the barriers to hire are low.
 

ManofGod

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That's because most people had a farm and didn't have to pay property taxes.

We can't agree on Unions. We can't agree on minimum wage. Americans can't even have a free health care system. Yet you're worried about the government having control over you? The elite already have control over the government. We Americans need to fix out democracy, not ignore it and hope the government doesn't control us because free money. How many people didn't accept the $1,400 check?

Which is when people go work at a dead end job like Amazon and work for 10 hours straight for 4 days. They don't keep employee's for more than 2 years, and they try to push you harder to fulfill orders. What a waste of human life. They know they'll have their warehouses nearly automated because I can't imagine having a turn over rate like that is going to last for Amazon.

Spying with the Pinkertons
 
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