verb (used with object), au·to·mat·ed, au·to·mat·ing.
verb (used without object), au·to·mat·ed, au·to·mat·ing.
Origin of automate
First recorded in 1950–55; back formation from automation
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
to make (a manufacturing process, factory, etc) automatic, or (of a manufacturing process, etc) to be made automatic
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
"to convert to automatic operation," 1954, back-formation from automated (q.v.). Ancient Greek verb automatizein meant "to act of oneself, to act unadvisedly." Related: Automating.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper