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A Pencil? Seriously?

A pencil? seriously?

A Pencil? Seriously?

When I was a kid, the grocer would total up the purchases with a pencil on the brown bag he’s use to pack the food. He’d double check the math, take your money, give you change, give you the bag of purchases. It took about a minute.

Today, the guy at the coffee shop labors over his new, high-tech computer/register, can’t get it to accept the charge for a large, iced latte, and finally says, “Just give me $5.” No tax is collected, no change provided! This takes three minutes with people waiting in line.

I read someplace that the steam locomotives of the early 1900s made the New York City to Rochester trip in less time than today’s Amtrak diesels.

I’m not a luddite, but please don’t assume that technology and AI are necessarily going to make everything in life easier or better. Of course, that grocer had to know how to do math in his head, and the train schedule was meant to favor passengers, not freight.

Written by

Alan Weiss is a consultant, speaker, and author of over 60 books. His consulting firm, Summit Consulting Group, Inc., has attracted clients from over 500 leading organizations around the world.

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