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This is Why You Go to College

Over the summer, the local department of transportation did some road work on the bridge on Bank St that goes over the Thruway. Well, now that I’m saying it out loud, I don’t really know it was the local folk, it could have been Thruway folk. Huh. In the long run, not important. 

It’s a pretty standard bridge, two lanes, one in each direction. So, no passing and not a lot of room on the ‘side’ of the road. And the side of the road is what was being worked on. The road crew was digging up the few feet between the line on the side of the road and the edge of the bridge. 

A semi-educated guess is to repair the edges of the bridge for problems related to snow and plowing but it’s only a guess. Again, not important. 

What was important was this: 

Clicky for bigger


Instead of live flag-people controlling traffic, they had these mechanical flag “persons” at each end of the construction area. They were timed so that one stopped traffic before the other would let traffic from the other end go (although it’s a relatively short bridge — you can pretty much see the traffic at the other end). 

Once they’re set up, they’ll run all day. No breaks, no whining, no sunstroke… no payroll. 

This is another example of a job that requires no education being replaced by a robot. At the very least, it’s two jobs being replaced by one since the smaller print says “remote controlled.” One person with a remote (you knew all that TV clicking would be worth something!) can control multiple flag machines from a central location. 

So you need to go to college to learn about mechanics, computers, remote controls and traffic planning to build and repair the machines. You could also be a business person who is selling these machines to construction firms so they can replace the flag-person with a flag-machine. 

Go to college. Pay attention in class. You need all of the skills you are learning to get a job.

(Meant to post this yesterday, got distracted by somethi…..)

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