The Jetson Age appears to be here. I remember growing up watching the futuristic cartoon The Jetsons wishing we could see who we were speaking to on our phones, food nuked and prepared within seconds, and children flying around on skateboards without wheels like little Elroy. Every childhood fantasy of the Jetson’s television show actualized over time. FaceTime, microwaves, and hover boards are Jetson modern conveniences that manifested right before our eyes. Never believing I would still be alive to see the technology that it has evolved into, I always figured my great-grandchildren would be the first to see a hover board. Now the world is ready for drones to fly over our homes, delivering all of our Walmart purchases directly. It is truly an exciting time.
However, I would rather see the funds that are currently being used to invest in drone testing to, instead, go into higher wages for Walmart’s employees. I must say that I am fascinated by these flying contraptions. Using the Chinese-made DJI drone first, America has actually fallen behind on this latest technology, waiting on Federal Aviation Administration approval. As exciting as it is to see this machine take to the sky to its destination and return on command is amazing. The dark side to this phenomenon is that drones will definitely eliminate the need to hire human employees to work in Walmart’s 5,000 stores. The $250 billion franchise is possibly looking in the future to save money by cutting their employees along with their healthcare. Drones could be looked at as the answer to a need or the demise of those in need.
According to USA Today, Walmart plans to, not only use the drones to make home deliveries directly to a customer’s home, but the franchise will also use it for surveillance and security of their stores and warehouses. The Federal Aviation Administration, crossing every ‘t’ and dotting every ‘i’, cleared drones used for commercial use only granting over 2,000 permits. The risk of a drone interfering with an airplane or crashing down from 2,000 feet in the air at high-speed onto a human being is beyond dangerous. Walmart has tested the drone indoors, but still waiting on a permit to test the drone outdoors.
I could think of some other great uses for the drone such as keeping a watchful eye on our children following them where ever they go, catching a cheating spouse with his or her lover, filming amazing aerial shots of the city or mountain tops for television and film, capturing a criminal in the act and following him until he is caught, and the list continues. The drone can be used for so many things. But eventually putting minimum wage earners on the unemployment line for the sake of progressive technology, I guess a company cannot make it to $250 billion by having a conscience all the time. Sometimes it is just business and nothing personal. If Walmart does not keep up with the trends in technology used to enhance business to stay ahead of its competition and increase its bottom-line, that $250 billion could start to dwindle.
I would not want to be the person who has to lay-off thousands of Walmart employees and explain to them they have been replaced by a flying drone. Tough spot to be in. To drone or not to drone? Given Walmart’s reputation in handling consciousness in the community, goodbye to man and hello to the drone.