Man's physical universe

xanabras

318 FORMS OF ENERGY

not otherwise be produced.

Machine-tending instruments have taken

over the jobs that have to do with weighing, sorting, inspecting, counting,

temperature-reading, and even chemical analysis of exhaust gases

and raw materials. A modern laundry machine washes the clothes,

rinses them three times, and spins them dry enough to hang on the

line, using the proper length of time and the proper water temperature

for each operation. The only thing that the housewife has to do is to

put the clothes and the proper detergent and water-softener in the

machine and operate the starting-switch.

The A. O. Smith Company of Milwaukee employs 600 engineers,

but only 200 skilled workmen, in its plant, which uses automatic

machines to turn out 10,000 automobile frames every 24 hours.

Adult Education Will Be Required to Help Society to Adjust Smoothly

to Changes Produced by the Machine.

A study of present trends points toward fewer machine tools, the

workers being arranged in shifts and the machines being used day and

night. Cheaper electricity will facilitate night-shift work, and twentyfour

hour a day operation of machines will promote more rapid changes

in industrial processes because fewer machine tools will be required

and therefore less money will be tied up in the machines. Furthermore

the machine tools will wear out more quickly and will thus require

replacement with more modern machine tools.

Present developments also point toward a very much more extensive

use of automatic machines.

It must be recognized that while new scientific discoveries will

undoubtedly absorb more workers than are displaced by the increased

use of automatic machines, yet many people who are displaced by

machines will find it difificult to find new jobs because their training

and experience have been centered on the kind of work for which the

demand is decreasing. During the past decade many streetcar conductors

and motormen have been thrown out of employment, and it is

difficult for a man between fifty and sixty-five years of age, who has

done nothing but run streetcars for twenty-five or thirty years to

adjust himself to a new job.

One of the adjustments of society to this problem of the displacement

of workers by machines is the widespread development of adult

education. Unemployment insurance will help to provide a living

while the worker is preparing for a new job. The majority of adults

did not receive as much higher education as the younger generation

is now enjoying, and as a rule their education was less practical and

less general than that which their children are receiving.

The scientific

More magazines by this user
Similar magazines