Minor Strangeness

Mythopoeika

I am a meat popsicle
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I use self-checkouts all the time. Scan your stuff, wait for someone to confirm that you're 'clearly over 18', swipe your contactless, done.

In the rare instances I'm not buying beer the second step is skipped so it's even quicker.

Why do people hate them?
I hate them because they put people out of work.
 

CarlosTheDJ

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I hate them because they put people out of work.
Do they?

The Tesco I use still has queues at every till for 'big shops', three people work on the self-checkouts (at a time), and I'm guessing people (like me) are far more likely to go in and buy a few bits using the self-checkout than stand in a queue behind people with trolleys. I would say they generate more sales.
 

Mythopoeika

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Do they?

The Tesco I use still has queues at every till for 'big shops', three people work on the self-checkouts (at a time), and I'm guessing people (like me) are far more likely to go in and buy a few bits using the self-checkout than stand in a queue behind people with trolleys. I would say they generate more sales.
Most of the supermarkets I use have replaced more and more conventional tills with these new ones. But yes, they can fit several of these into the space formerly occupied by a human operated till. I do think they are reducing the number of till jobs.
 

Eponastill

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I use self-checkouts all the time. Scan your stuff, wait for someone to confirm that you're 'clearly over 18', swipe your contactless, done.

In the rare instances I'm not buying beer the second step is skipped so it's even quicker.

Why do people hate them?
I hate them because they never seem to work properly and somebody has to come over and sort out the problem (I'd say more than half the time, maybe it's just me confusing them, going too quickly or too slowly or something). And I hate their patronising voices (have you swiped your nectar card?!).
Yeah well I still use them, I admit.
But I left my job at the library when they brought them in, because I was reprimanded for actually helping customers at the desk and talking to them like human beings ("they have to use the self-service" - what, even older people and technophobes and people with small children and people with learning disabilities and people who just want a chat, and people who want to talk about books?! oh yes. My cynicism ratcheted up a further notch that day)
 

Iris

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One of my friends who knits for charity went into Big W the other day to buy some wool.
There was no one on the assisted checkout she usually uses and the one girl on duty said she had to use the self checkout.
When she said she didn't know what to do the girl said" well you will just have to learn" and rudely pushed the buttons and threw her wool so hard it landed on the floor. She said she won't be shopping there in future.
 

gordonrutter

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H
It's not the sales assistant's decision whether to open a checkout or not so that person couldn't have done it.
he may not have been a sales assistant, the person who was there, I asked if he would open it and he just said no. No explanation or anything.
 

escargot

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H

he may not have been a sales assistant, the person who was there, I asked if he would open it and he just said no. No explanation or anything.
We get asked at work to do things we're not allowed to. Sometimes a good answer is just 'No' because giving an explanation can lead to an argument.
 

Floyd1

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This morning I decided to 'screw my courage to the sticking-place', and pay for my Co-op supermarket shopping via the self-swipe boothes (this usually ends in tears, but I had my options forced for me through circumstance).

None of the traditional isles were open, and the queue at the kiosk stretched all the way back to the late Triassic, with alcohol/tobacco&hope addicts.

I dutifully put my bags-for-life into the bagging-area, swiped my membership dividend card, and began cautiously swiping my grocery items and newspapers across the chastising terror that is a self-service aisle. I was doing so well, right up until I reached the point of swiping the newspapers, whereupon the alarm went off with the warning "please wait, an assistant is coming" (this, of course, gives your fellow suffers an opportunity to see what prophylactics/pharmaceuticals/hallucinogens/bladed weapons you're trying to steal). Anyway, this interruption was just because the Co-op AI was unwilling to accept that newspapers weigh as little as a newspaper.

At last I was at my end...only to be presented with the words we all know and love "No Cash Payments! Cards only!". Suicide seemed a rather extreme mid-week response, but preferable to the prospect of having to reverse my bagpacking efforts, thereafter to join the end of that queue of addicts.

I briefly prayed to the Gods of Co-op, and had a sudden burst of possible redemption....on the screen, right-hand side, was a cryptic button marked "Pay with Member Benefits".

With a beating heart (I am currently alive) I pressed this button, to find that my 'Membership Balance' was £24.28....

And of course (but you knew this already) my totalised nett cost of all items was...£24.28.

Even after two-for-one, multisave buys, discount offers....cost to me was £0.00

So I pressed the 'Pay With Membership Card' button, snorted my derision at AI shopping, and stumbled out of the shop knowing that this time, I had won.

And I nodded to Derren Brown as he winked at me by the exit.

(ps this last bit was made-up, it was actually Dynamo, the Co-op can't afford Derren)
I've never used a co-op self service, but use my local Sainsbury's a lot. They're usually ok, but what really drives me to despair is, as I often (alright, always) need a member of staff to confirm I'm over 18 (for the wine), I have to call one over. On approach to said self-service there are usually one, two or sometimes three members of staff hanging about talking who are there just for that reason. They also have a glance in people's trolleys/baskets as they turn up. As I start to scan my few items, as soon as I put the wine through the scanner I often see, out of the corner of my eye, the staff walking off to attend to some other vastly more important business leaving me to stand there trying to get their attention for 5 minutes. This doesn't happen all the time, but far too often nonetheless. It's enough to make you give up wine. But not quite.
 

Ermintruder

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Why do people hate them?
They are improving- but it's still far too challenging an experience. The automatic electronic words "Please Wait- an assistant is coming" are heard far too often. Not just for lightweight maybe-they're-not-right items, just anything.

I find self-scanning to be a weird experience.

I've only ever tried being an electronic gunslinger in branches of Tesco, but I don't ever seem to reach the level of 'Trusted Customer'....I've done it maybe four or five times, but the system still insists that I'm not to be allowed to leave the shop without an annoying recheck by some petty smug gauleiter who has undoubtedly the easiest job in the whole damn store.

They just stay stay lurking in that strange little self-scan corral, doing absolutely ziltch, until some poor untrustworthy patron (just me) comes along. Nobody else ever seems to get checked, seruously.

And why do all supermarkets insist on having about 60 (yes) of these electronic customer-use scanning guns. There will never ever be 60 people simultaneously wanting to shop via self-scan, unless there's a major panic buying spree, such as caused by a zombie apocalypse. In which case I shall be nicking one of those barcode scanning guns to act as a self-protection sidearm against the Undead....zombies are no match for a two-for-one manager's special zap between the eyes.

@Bigphoot2 - had you seen this news item in the 'Tullie'?
https://www.eveningtelegraph.co.uk/...r-plans-ahead-of-possible-rise-of-the-undead/
 

Ermintruder

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My internal recollection of the north-east coast of England is strangely-flawed. I keep thinking Scarborough is much (much) further north than it really is. In my mind, it's in Northumberland, just a little south of Berwick/Alnwick. And I've somehow always thought that Whitley Bay and Whitby were the same place.
 

Schrodinger's Zebra

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My internal recollection of the north-east coast of England is strangely-flawed. I keep thinking Scarborough is much (much) further north than it really is. In my mind, it's in Northumberland, just a little south of Berwick/Alnwick. And I've somehow always thought that Whitley Bay and Whitby were the same place.
Along a similar vein; whenever we've taken a train into the nearby city, I'm always surprised on the return journey, to find us passing a particular landmark because my 'internal map' of the place suggests that in order to pass it, we would have to be travelling East, when in fact we are travelling West.

It's as if my 'internal map' of this city is upside down. Yet I've no idea why that should be the case. It doesn't happen anywhere else (I should point out that I don't have a particularly good sense of direction, but I usually just feel 'lost' rather than feeling 'upside down' as it were).

And the other thing is, that no matter how many times it happens, and how many times Mr Zebra tries to explain this city's layout to me, I still get one heck of a jolt whenever we pass the landmark that, to my mind, we shouldn't be passing.
 

Floyd1

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Along a similar vein; whenever we've taken a train into the nearby city, I'm always surprised on the return journey, to find us passing a particular landmark because my 'internal map' of the place suggests that in order to pass it, we would have to be travelling East, when in fact we are travelling West.

It's as if my 'internal map' of this city is upside down. Yet I've no idea why that should be the case. It doesn't happen anywhere else (I should point out that I don't have a particularly good sense of direction, but I usually just feel 'lost' rather than feeling 'upside down' as it were).

And the other thing is, that no matter how many times it happens, and how many times Mr Zebra tries to explain this city's layout to me, I still get one heck of a jolt whenever we pass the landmark that, to my mind, we shouldn't be passing.
I can usually tell (roughly) which way NSEW are just by a 'feeling'. However there was one place I used to drive to that threw me out for some reason. After looking at road maps to see where I was going wrong, I would think I'd got it sorted, only to have the same disorientation next time I went.
 

catseye

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I actually drive a till as my day job. I spend somewhere around 7 hours a day behind it. I KNOW HOW THEY WORK.

So can anyone explain why I cannot use a self-service checkout, ever? Whatever I do, whichever shop I am in, we always end up with the stand off situation of the machine telling me there is an unexpected item in the bagging area, or that I need to put my bag in the bagging area or whatever, even when there is no such area or issue, and I end up shouting at the machine "this is my JOB godsdammit!!"
 

Mythopoeika

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I actually drive a till as my day job. I spend somewhere around 7 hours a day behind it. I KNOW HOW THEY WORK.

So can anyone explain why I cannot use a self-service checkout, ever? Whatever I do, whichever shop I am in, we always end up with the stand off situation of the machine telling me there is an unexpected item in the bagging area, or that I need to put my bag in the bagging area or whatever, even when there is no such area or issue, and I end up shouting at the machine "this is my JOB godsdammit!!"
Are you able to confirm whether fewer people have been hired because of these infernal machines?
 

catseye

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There aren't any in our rural community. I only come across them in the city.

We're supposed to be getting self service tills when they build our new shop, but no redundancies are planned as a result, as far as I know. Most shop floor work is shelf stacking and stock control, not working the till, so probably not.
 

Mythopoeika

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There aren't any in our rural community. I only come across them in the city.

We're supposed to be getting self service tills when they build our new shop, but no redundancies are planned as a result, as far as I know. Most shop floor work is shelf stacking and stock control, not working the till, so probably not.
OK, thanks.
 

INT21

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This thread seems to have drifted away from it's intended purpose. So I'll insert this here. Mods feel free to move it.

This is a hypothetical situation based on future (very near future) AI.

Man applies for a job that requires concentration. He gets turned down. This happens a few times, so in the end he manages to meet with one of the companies reps and asks him why, as clearly he is very qualified.

Well, says the rep, to be honest, it's your drinking that bothers us.

But I don't drink.

Well, we have it that you go into Aldi every two days and buy a bottle of vodka. That seems excessive, would you not agree ? And it must effect your judement.

Here is what happened. He used his card to buy the Vodka. And AI tracked him through the transaction.. The companies bought data on all people who applied for jobs. security cameras confirm he is buying vodka.

Far fetched ? Not really.

I go to Aldi for a bottle of Vodka every two days. But I don't drink; It is for someone else who always gives me cash to get it. But to save myself having to draw cash from an ATM during the week, I keep the cash and use my card.

The Aldi check - out machine doesn't know I don't actually drink the Vodka.

As AI will be gradually building a dossier on all of us, it is easy to see how many could be tripped up by things like this.

If I buy weed killer and Diesel, am I a farmer with a lot of weeds or a person making a bomb ?

Maybe you were involved in a driving accident. Robo Lawyer trawls your files and sees your alcohol purchases and uses that info against you.

We are into dark times.

INT21.
 

Mythopoeika

I am a meat popsicle
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This thread seems to have drifted away from it's intended purpose. So I'll insert this here. Mods feel free to move it.

This is a hypothetical situation based on future (very near future) AI.

Man applies for a job that requires concentration. He gets turned down. This happens a few times, so in the end he manages to meet with one of the companies reps and asks him why, as clearly he is very qualified.

Well, says the rep, to be honest, it's your drinking that bothers us.

But I don't drink.

Well, we have it that you go into Aldi every two days and buy a bottle of vodka. That seems excessive, would you not agree ? And it must effect your judement.

Here is what happened. He used his card to buy the Vodka. And AI tracked him through the transaction.. The companies bought data on all people who applied for jobs. security cameras confirm he is buying vodka.

Far fetched ? Not really.

I go to Aldi for a bottle of Vodka every two days. But I don't drink; It is for someone else who always gives me cash to get it. But to save myself having to draw cash from an ATM during the week, I keep the cash and use my card.

The Aldi check - out machine doesn't know I don't actually drink the Vodka.

As AI will be gradually building a dossier on all of us, it is easy to see how many could be tripped up by things like this.

If I buy weed killer and Diesel, am I a farmer with a lot of weeds or a person making a bomb ?

Maybe you were involved in a driving accident. Robo Lawyer trawls your files and sees your alcohol purchases and uses that info against you.

We are into dark times.

INT21.
That is beginning to happen in China.
Totalitarians love having this technology.
 

Tempest63

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This thread seems to have drifted away from it's intended purpose. So I'll insert this here. Mods feel free to move it.

This is a hypothetical situation based on future (very near future) AI.

Man applies for a job that requires concentration. He gets turned down. This happens a few times, so in the end he manages to meet with one of the companies reps and asks him why, as clearly he is very qualified.

Well, says the rep, to be honest, it's your drinking that bothers us.

But I don't drink.

Well, we have it that you go into Aldi every two days and buy a bottle of vodka. That seems excessive, would you not agree ? And it must effect your judement.

Here is what happened. He used his card to buy the Vodka. And AI tracked him through the transaction.. The companies bought data on all people who applied for jobs. security cameras confirm he is buying vodka.

Far fetched ? Not really.

I go to Aldi for a bottle of Vodka every two days. But I don't drink; It is for someone else who always gives me cash to get it. But to save myself having to draw cash from an ATM during the week, I keep the cash and use my card.

The Aldi check - out machine doesn't know I don't actually drink the Vodka.

As AI will be gradually building a dossier on all of us, it is easy to see how many could be tripped up by things like this.

If I buy weed killer and Diesel, am I a farmer with a lot of weeds or a person making a bomb ?

Maybe you were involved in a driving accident. Robo Lawyer trawls your files and sees your alcohol purchases and uses that info against you.

We are into dark times.

INT21.
I drink the Vodka. Does Aldi do any decent Vodka?
 
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