Image provided by: University of Nebraska-Lincoln Libraries, Lincoln, NE
About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Dec. 13, 1984)
Jl w vJ iJJ I r U iru I
Thursday, December 13, 1984
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Vol. 84 No. 77
Wcaliicr: Snow likely today, beginning mid
morning, with a high of 26 (-3C). Thursday night
snow continuing with a low of 16 (-9C), 2 to 4
inches possible Friday, cold with snow ending
and a high of 25 (-4C).
CcS CivtscherDt!! Nsbrtsk&n
What's in The Ma
q trap, stun
boost prodmct qn
v.. a. r -i i o
pint naremeia woFiier
000 0 S3 J $ 0 0 000000 0 0 0 0 0
By Matt Okerlund
Special to the Daily Nebrnsk&n
America's industries are on the cutting
edge of a change. It is a change that weaves
itself into the social and work fabric of the
nation, matching man and machine.
For manufacturers, it is a change that
comes in the name of higher productivity,
lower labor costs and increased product
quality. For workers, it is a change that
threatens their jobs.
Even in Nebraska where industries
often are insulated from change robots
are entering the workplace.
"A robot excels over a person because of
its consistency and quality," said Joseph Le
Cointe, senior automation engineer at
Square D Company in Lincoln.
"If you have a situation where an operator
is building something by hand," Le-Cointe
said, "then you have to deal with unions, you
have to deal with moods and you have to deal
I . MM
PM TcsSDaiiy f-lsSsrcssn
with holidays and coffee breaks. But with
automated machines, you have control over
the quality. And that's a big plus with
Le-Cointe echoes the thoughts of many
manufacturers who view robotics as a
defense against the keen foreign and domes
tic competition of a world market.
In Lincoln, two manufacturers Goo
dyear Tire and Rubber Co. and Square D
Company are on the verge of installing
robots in their production lines. One indus
try Cushman OMC Lincoln already has
two robots in operation.
"We felt that in a world economy, in order
to be as efficient as we can possibly be, we're
going to need the best tools, the best
machines available. And in this case it
means robots," said Ron Maulsby, spokes
man for Goodyear.
Goodyear is not alone in its drive for effi
ciency. An Organization of Economic Coop
eration and Development study tracks how
More than $500,000 tagged
the momentum of robotics has swelled in
the past few years.
The international report notes that in
1982 the global stock of robots was esti
mated at 31,000, more than double the
13,700 in 1980. The organization predicts
that by 1990, robot numbers will climb to
330,000 with an annual-volume gain of 30 to
35 percent in the next decade.
At Cushman OMC Lincoln, a manufac
turer of utility vehicles and turf mainte
nance equipment, two robots have been
purchased since 1982 to work in welding
Gerry Ogren, manager of manufacturing
engineering at Cushman, said the robots are
producing twice as much as a human
worker because, unlike a worker, they do
not have to spend time loading and unload
ing the materials welded. And since robots
make each weld the same, they have a
higher degree of quality than workers, Ogren
A producer of electrical circuit breakers,
Square D company soon will have a robot in
operation. As a past developer of robots for
General Motors and Ball Aerospace, Le
Cointe said Square D's first step is to study
what the robot can and cannot do before
deciding where it best fits on the work floor.
Gilbert G. Laws, president of the United
Rubber Workers of America in Lincoln, said
that by early next year, a robot will be set up
at Goodyear, a plant that largely manufac
tures rubber belts and hoses for automo
biles, appliances and machinery.
In line with other union leaders, Laws
questions the prospect of a robot progress
ing onto the industry floor, but he accepts it
as a move that must be taken if U.S. indus
tries are to remain financially sound.
And while "more and better" are the
standard words being issued by manufac
turers when introducing robots to the
workplace, not all workers are so quick in
welcoming the programmable machines.
The OECD report outlines why workers
are skeptical. Currently, most robots have
performed simple pick and place tasks. The
report says each of these robots displace 1.4
to 1.6 human workers. But the speed of
robotic sophistication and application is
blinding, and a legion of robots with the
mechanical expertise to see and feel is fore
seen by the mid-1980s. The OECD study
notes that each of these robots will displace
four to six workers.
In coming years, industries involved in the
mass production of goods increasingly will
install robots and automated machinery,
said Jack Siegman, a sociology professor at
UNL . As a result, some workers in these fac
tories will lose their jobs, he said.
Richard Schonberger, a mangement pro
fessor at UNL said many of the companies
that are bent on putting in robots are those
which have had trouble with workers and
"Much of the interest in robots is based on
situations where labor and management
haven't gotten along well and labor is viewed
as a problem rather than an opportunity,"
Fresh from the
Unusual Christmas gifts
f help cure gift-giving woes $
CcaitLsssd en P&gs 13
By Beth Thompson
Dally Nebraskan Staff Eeporter
Editor's note: This is the fourth
Q article in a five-part series on the
fan, festivities, economics and
'& headaches of the holiday season
In a rut about what to buy family
and friends for Christmas?
w Using a little imagination and
knowing what the hot gift ideas are
5f may turn an otherwise drab gift into
W a festive surprise this holiday sea-son.
w For unusual friends with extra-
ordinary tastes, Judy Wilson, direc-
tor of Haymarket Art Gallery, said,
w "We're loaded to the gills with stuff."
k Wilson's merchandise, ranging from
$2 to $2,500 consists of only hand-
made items nothing she sells is
made from a pattern,
w Haymarket, 119 S. Ninth St., has
gilts for those hard-to-choose-people
jff things like hand-woven scarfs,
W paintings, metal sculptures orstuff-
ed teddy bears and pigs.
Wilson also carries wooden an-
tique car puzzles ranging from 15
f- inches to 5 feet long. Also, for the
w food-lover, homemade mulberry and
elderberry jams can be purchased
Janie Lane, owner of Fringe and
Tassle, now located at 735 O St.,
suggested the latest rage in nostal
gic fashions as a special if unus
ual Christmas surprise. For men,
fedora hats of the "SOs and 40s are
selling for $30 to $40. Thin-striped,
narrow ties sell for $3.
For women or men, long tweed W
overcoats are popular for $20 to
$30. And the famous, full-length
racoon fur coats are selling for $50
Catching up with the times, Caryn
Clinton, of Richman Gordman's
home entertainment department,
4600 Vine St., said video games still
are popular for Christmas this year.
While Frogger, Popeye and Zaxxon
are popular Atari games, Target
salesclerk Bob Glenn said Trivial
Pursuit for $23.88 ($18.99 for the
smaller editions) and Cabbage Patch
dolls for $29.99 still are popular
Glenn said the craze for such
games and toys begin by "word of
mouth. It's kind of like a domino
theory." When a child owns a popu
lar toy, all of his friends want one.
Continued on Page 13
Kerrey mmminces md for
in m m 7vv,
By Gene Gentnsp
Daily Nebr&skaa Senior Keporterr
Bankrupt farmers can get help
finding a new career through a
program announced Tuesday by
Gov. Bob Kerrey.
The "Farmers in Transition"
program will offer career coun
seling, assistance in resume writ
ing, pre-employment training, on-the-job
training, classroom train
ing, supportive services and re
location assistance for bankrupt
Kerrey said the program is de
signed to help the increasing
number of bankrupt farmers, and
said he disagreed with U.S. Secre
tary of Agriculture John Block
and former Agriculture Secretary
Earl Butz about the status of
They're saying the number of
people leaving the farm today is
no greater than in the past. That's
foolishness. There is a far greater
number than in any other penod
of time," Kerrey said.
Labor commissioner Ron
Sorensen said more than $523,000
has been budgeted for the pro
gram. The Greater Omaha Area
would receive $174,028, the
Greater Lincoln area would get
$50,000 and the rest of Nebraska
would get the remaining $299,281.
"It's our responsibility to not
only deal with the factors which
are causing this, but to also help
assist those farmers who are now
seeking to enter a sometimes very
different work place," he said.
Kerrey said the state will help
farmers as much as possible but
said the state will not loan farmers
money "so that they could try and
start up an already failed business.
"The state cant afford to be
come a lender of last resort," he
said. "In the area of ci 3dit, it is a
private and federal responsibil
ity. The state just cant afford to
Sorensen said that to become
eligible for the program, farmers
must show evidence of perman
ent business dissolution through
foreclosure, bankruptcy, inability
to secure capital necessary to
continue a business operation, or
proof of voluntary foreclosure.
Persons formerly employed by a
now-dissolved business would also
be eligible, he said.
Kerrey said the program also is
an attempt to help federal gov
ernment officials better recognize
the problems in the farm sector.
He accused the federal goverment
of taking a "market-level
approach" to the country's agri
culture problems and criticized
U.S. Budget Director David
"David Stockman is doing the
same thing he did in 1981," Ker
rey said. "He put together a budget
bill and not a farm bill. His
approach is to let the 'law of the
jungle' determine who is success
ful and who is not."
More information on the pro
gram, which is funded through
the Job Training Partnership Act.
can be obtained from local job
service offices and country exten
Powered by Open ONI