As more millennials hit the workforce, businesses are forced to adapt their antiquated processes to accommodate for this tech-savvy, educated group of individuals. As a result, businesses now more than ever are investing in automation technology to streamline manual, cumbersome tasks — allowing their staff more time to focus on strategic operations.
But automation technology is nothing new. As it turns out, many people don’t know a lot about the history of automation. From when it started and why, to who has leveraged it — there are many surprising facts spanning the topic.
Whether you are reading this for fun or to find a fact to help enforce a business initiative, here are five interesting facts about automation technology that you may not know.
5 Interesting Facts About Automation Technology
- The Greeks used it.
Although it may seem like a new technology, automation dates back to ancient Greece. The Latinization of the Greek automaton, or “acting of one’s own will”, was first used by Homer. In fact, complex mechanical devices are known to have existed in Hellenistic Greece, including the only surviving example of the earliest known analog computer — the Antikythera mechanism.
- There was a Golden Age.
The period from 1860 to 1910 is known as “The Golden Age of Automata”. In Paris, many small family-based companies of automata makers flourished. These rare and expensive French automata continue to attract collectors from around the world.
- There are lots, and I mean lots, of technologies to choose from.
From 2016 to 2017, marketing automation alone saw a 36% rise in vendors (source: MarTech). Automation has been adopted in every industry, each using it to solve problems unique to their sector. Information Technology (IT), Computer-Aided Manufacturing (CAM), Numerically Controlled (NC) equipment, robots, and Flexible Manufacturing Systems (FMS) are just a fraction of the different technologies currently available.
- There’s a type of automation named after Detroit.
“Detroit automation” consists of moving parts from one machine to another while automatic adjustments are made to the positioning of the tools that shape them. For example, when a block of wood goes into the end of one machine, and a finished wooden doll comes out of another machine.
- Esker on Demand, a document process automation technology, has automated the amount of pages equivalent to the weight of nearly 10,000 sumo wrestlers.
The amount of paper we use today is excessive — it’s been estimated that in the U.S. we use 65,395,000,000 sheets of paper each day. Document process automation lends a helping hand by reducing unnecessary paper consumption while optimizing business processes.
Know of any other interesting facts that should be included? Let us know below in the comments!