Technology and automation have become significant players in the world we live in today. Automation has received both positive and negative feedback - some appreciate the work it can do, while others fear losing income due to being replaced by machinery. The key is to upskill our workers to handle more advanced tasks, and optimise resources for repetitive tasks that can be more efficiently handled with machinery. Here we take a look at some ways Singapore has used automation for the betterment of society.
1. NLB Automated Book Readers
Created by local company Senserbot, this Shelf-Reading Robot is the product of a collaboration between the National Library Board (NLB) and A*Star to tackle a frustrating problem: The issue of misplaced books and the hours of unnecessary labour wasted on rearranging them on a daily basis.
Previously, this had to be done manually and as you might imagine, it was extremely labour-intensive. The robot, however, is able to do it faster and with better accuracy. The Shelf-Reading Robot is able to scan the RFID tags in library books on the shelves, making sure that they are in the right place, and in the right order. The robot has reported to be able to do this with 99% accuracy, making it an excellent replacement.
Tampines Regional Library deploys two Shelf-Reading Robots and together, they can scan most of the library's collection in one night. The next morning, the system creates a report, indicating the misplaced books and their location, to help library staff manually replace the books without wasting time finding them. Not only does this keep the library neat and tidy, but it also helps patrons locate their book on the NLB app itself.