au·​to·​ma·​tion | \ ˌȯ-tə-ˈmā-shən How to pronounce automation (audio) \

Definition of automation

1 : the technique of making an apparatus, a process, or a system operate automatically
2 : the state of being operated automatically
3 : automatically controlled operation of an apparatus, process, or system by mechanical or electronic devices that take the place of human labor

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Synonyms for automation


mechanization, robotization

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Examples of automation in a Sentence

feared that automation would add millions to the ranks of the unemployed

Recent Examples on the Web

As McAfee's Advanced Threat Team reported in a blog post today, Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) logins for the building automation systems at a large international airport were found for sale on the Dark Web as well—for a mere $10. Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "Year-old router bug exploited to steal sensitive DOD drone, tank documents," 11 July 2018 The home also comes with an automation system, a video intercom, and security. Shannon Rooney,, "Philadelphia's most expensive rentals: What you can get for $15,000 a month," 15 May 2018 But many of those workers were rehired and more brought in as automation led to growth in the business. Christopher Mims, WSJ, "This Thriving City—and Many Others—Could Soon Be Disrupted by Robots," 9 Feb. 2019 Truck manufacturers are maintaining their focus on automation even as the industry debates benefits in areas such as platooning. Jennifer Smith, WSJ, "Today’s Logistics Report: Rerouting for Brexit; Reeling Smartphone Suppliers; Braking Robot Cars," 18 Jan. 2019 So the vocational schools should follow this projection of job increase or decrease based on automation. Eric Johnson, Recode, "If they don’t want to lose their jobs to a machine, doctors will need to become compassionate ‘human connectors’," 17 Sep. 2018 Musk told investors on a first-quarter earnings conference call that the company relied too heavily on automation. Washington Post, "Tesla makes 5,000 Model 3s per week, but can it continue?," 2 July 2018 Later, CEO Elon Musk would reveal that the gap was mostly caused by over-reliance on automation, and the months since have involved rethinking the entire Model 3 production process on the fly. David Z. Morris, Fortune, "The Agility, Persistence, and Pain Behind Tesla’s Model 3 Manufacturing Turnaround," 1 July 2018 Part of the problem was Tesla’s over-reliance on automation in its Fremont, California factory, which caused production bottlenecks and delays. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "Tesla reportedly hit its Model 3 manufacturing goal hours after its deadline," 1 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'automation.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of automation

1912, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for automation

automatic entry 1

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Statistics for automation

Last Updated

8 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for automation

The first known use of automation was in 1912

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More Definitions for automation


au·​to·​ma·​tion | \ ˌȯ-tə-ˈmā-shən How to pronounce automation (audio) \

Kids Definition of automation

1 : the method of making a machine, a process, or a system work without being directly controlled by a person
2 : automatic working of a machine, process, or system by mechanical or electronic devices that take the place of humans

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Comments on automation

What made you want to look up automation? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


marked by a state of overwhelming emotion

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