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[aw-tuh-mey-shuh n] /ˌɔ təˈmeɪ ʃən/
the technique, method, or system of operating or controlling a process by highly automatic means, as by electronic devices, reducing human intervention to a minimum.
a mechanical device, operated electronically, that functions automatically, without continuous input from an operator.
act or process of automating.
the state of being automated.
Origin of automation
First recorded in 1945-50; autom(atic) + (oper)ation
Related forms
proautomation, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for automation
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He complained of segregation and unemployment, and automation in the United States.

    Warren Commission (1 of 26): Hearings Vol. I (of 15) The President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy
  • automation or not, Leoh thought smilingly, there were certain human values that transcended mere efficiency.

    The Dueling Machine Benjamin William Bova
  • automation, the second industrial revolution, has eliminated for all practical purposes the need for their labor.

    Mercenary Dallas McCord Reynolds
  • automation at its ultimate, not even the steward department had tasks adequately to fill the hours.

    Adaptation Dallas McCord Reynolds
  • Even where men could have taken charge, automation was cheaper, more reliable, less risky of lives.

    Industrial Revolution Poul William Anderson
  • automation rationalized away the literate component of many activities.

  • Once integrated in practical experiences of a different nature, such as those of automation, they all allow for a new dynamics.

  • As those who leave our schools and farms demand new jobs, automation takes old jobs away.

British Dictionary definitions for automation


the use of methods for controlling industrial processes automatically, esp by electronically controlled systems, often reducing manpower
the extent to which a process is so controlled
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for automation

1948, in the manufacturing sense, coined by Ford Motor Co. Vice President Delmar S. Harder, from automatic + -ion. Earlier (1838) was automatism, which meant "quality of being automatic" in the classical sense.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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