This is an age of machine. Machine has acquired a high priority in the modern era. It has come to occupy a place of major importance in the life of man. In all spheres and walks of life machine comes to the aid of man. Right from the time of waking up in the morning till going to bed at night, man continues to make use of some machine or the other. For example, man wakes up with the help of a machine (alarm watch), takes bath with the help of water brought by and heated by machine, enjoys breakfast prepared by machine, travels by some machine and even talks by some machine (telephone). Not only that, man even writes with the help of some machine (typewriter). In short, machine has come to stay as an indispensable instrument of considerable assistance to man at every step.
Countless are the uses which machine has conferred upon man. For example, machine has helped in making man modern and civilized. The products of machine are definitely finer and more finished than those made by the human hand. Machine always brings precision and accuracy into making of articles. This is why products are well finished and refined, and lend grace by their use. Whether it is cloth or footwear, head-wear, or other articles of day-to-day use machine made things are demonstrably fine and beautifully turned out. One does not notice roughness or unwanted protuberances in appearance, unmarred by any blots. This is directly ascribable to the refined and well adjusted production of machine.
Machine-made articles are also fairly cheaper than those of human handiwork. This is evident from the fact that the human hand requires plenty of time in preparing an article, machine, on the other hand, requires considerably less time. Machines turn out articles in an astonishingly short period. If, for example, one man, can produce an article in a day, the modern machine designed forth at purpose will be able to produce some hundreds of such articles in the course of the same day. Hence articles manufactured by machine are priced at lower rates.
Machine has reduced the toil and sweat of the laborer. Formerly, when there were no machines, human beings had to work breathlessly in the severities of weather to produce articles. Some articles need tempering under too high or too low temperature. Machine produce numerous articles while a human being, unaided by machine, can produces only very little. However, a machine, attended to by only one man can produce several articles without any difficulty. The attendant is there only to regulate the working of machine. He has not to undergo any stresses or strains which man had to bear formerly. Thus, man has benefited much on this score.
Machine helps in promoting international friendship and goodwill. Friendly relations develop between countries which export machines and import machines. Good neighborly relations and a climate of peace become the inevitable result of the transaction of machines. In addition, machine-experts are exchanged between different countries. Engineering and technical students are also sent abroad for receiving training in mechanically developed countries. Advance countries send technical experts to less advanced or undeveloped countries for manning technical or teaching posts. Machine thus provides the wherewithal for an emotional amity and co-operation.
Again, machine is responsible for progress and prosperity in the present-day world. It is well-known that countries, which have taken a lead in the matter of machine, are fare ahead of others. Russia, the U.S.A., the U.K., and some other western countries have become considerably advanced, only because of the great progress in scientific and technical spheres. They have taken strides during the twentieth century in the field of machine. Machine is thus the source of wealth and prosperity and helps in eradicating poverty and misery. It is for this reason that western countries are prosperous.
But machine has done a great damage, too, to mankind. It is chiefly machine that is responsible for materialism which m arks the present-day world. The idea is that machine had led man to become very materialistic and forgetful of other human qualities. Money has become the be-all and end-all of everything. Man is now a selfish, arrogant and snobbish creature, forgetful of the misery of fellow human beings. Human values like courtesy, helpful attitude, pity and sympathy have gradually gone into the background.
Machine has led to disputes between man and man. Every man now wants to a mass wealth by harassing and exploiting others to the best of his capacity. The modern capitalist, for example, wishes to victimize his labourers to the utmost. Labour-capitalist conflicts are quite well known to the present day world. However, the worst evil of machine is that it has made the rich richer, and the laborer very poor and this lacuna is a threat as it will expand.
Since machine has generally led to prosperity and awakening and has given man the time for other pursuits, man has taken more interest in politics. This is evident from the history of mankind during the past one or two centuries. It is machine which is largely responsible for the introduction of many political system in the world. It is felt that if there were no progress of machine in the manner in which it has been, the world may perhaps have been a peaceful place to live in.
Machine is highly responsible for the evil of unemployment that prevails now. The monster of unemployment refuses to come under control. This is because formerly everybody remained busy in producing some article or the other, but now machine has taken the place of man and, in general, one machine can do as much work as hundreds or thousands of men can do. Machine has also given a death blow to fine arts. Painting, dancing, music and other arts are now fast declining. It is feared that in course of time these valuable human gems will show further decline since man is getting more busy with industrial and mechanical work. Artistic excellences attained by man till now are likely to deteriorate.