Every time you use the  automatic checkout machine at the supermarket, you are essentially getting a flavour of how the future is going to look in a whole variety of industries. Photograph: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A few weeks ago, a tragic accident occurred at a Volkswagen factory in Baunatal, Germany. A 21-year-old contractor was installing a robot when its arm(...)

In 1955, Walter Reuther, head of the US car workers’ union, told of a visit to a new automatically operated Ford plant. Pointing to all (...)