Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Obsolete Occupations: Jobs that are now obsolete...

The economy has taken away so many jobs. And of course, let's not forget the "new paradigm" with all of its "new market forces", i.e. sending jobs overseas to countries were the cost of labor is significantly lower, which in essence scuttles the middle class.

But before there was the economy, computers and machines took over so many jobs once done by humans. I found this story on the NPR site of jobs that are now obsolete, entire professions that are now obsolete.

Jobs like a pinsetter in a bowling alley. Elevator operator. Switchboard operator. Ice man. Milkman, although I know in some small towns and suburbs this occupation is offered, but more out of nostalgia than anything else.

But in this terrible economy, I wonder about more jobs that are slowly dying. When will checkout clerks be extinct, thanks to self-check lines? At the grocery store, I already use a hand-held scanner to scan everything that goes into my cart, then I simply download it at the checkout. It not only makes checking out faster, but it also lets me know exactly how much I'm spending, and if an item is marked wrong.

Wiill smart cards finally make toll-takers on highways go the way of the do-do? (Or better yet, how about toll roads going the way of the dodo.)

See and read the whole story here.

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