You vs. Machines (Spoiler: Machines Win)

Tony Carnevale for Philips Norelco

We’d be a lot slower and less efficient without machines, that’s for sure. Technology kicks humans’ butts, from a speed and power perspective, on the regular. But just how much? Here’s how five products compare to their old-school, hand-operated counterparts, using real benchmarks anyone can understand. One thing’s for sure: after checking out these infographics, you’re going to want the best machines on your side, like the Philips Norelco Shaver 9300.


The typing rate of “40 words per minute” is an average among all people, including those whose jobs don’t significantly involve a computer (Who are those people?). If you’re reading this at work, that means there’s a keyboard in front of you, and your typing speed’s probably a lot higher.

Think hand-washing your dishes saves water? Think again. Modern dishwashers are engineered to be super stingy with water and still get everything squeaky clean.


A standard snow shovel holds about 1.5 cubic feet of snow, and if you maintain a robotically high rate of shoveling, you might be able to get an average driveway done in about 20 minutes. That’s if you’re in great shape. A snowblower, on the other hand, finishes the job in less time than it takes to make a sandwich, and it’s about as physically taxing as eating that sandwich.


You can find a light bulb that will be as bright as you want, but candles have a hard limit. They’re still great for séances, though.


When’s the last time you saw a straight razor? Unless you’re a hardcore artisanal shaving hipster, it’s probably been a while (or maybe never). And that’s good. Not only were those hand-wielded blades unnerving, they paled in comparison to the mighty Philips Norelco Shaver 9300, which perfectly guides hairs for a close shave with V-Track Precision Blades, and cuts 30% closer to the skin than its predecessors.

No matter what the task, it looks like the machines win. If the day comes when robots start getting on sports teams, then we’re really screwed. But until then, let’s just be happy that so far, machines are used to augment and enhance our tasks, and don’t actually compete against us.

Tony Carnevale is a senior writer for Studio@Gawker. He hopes one day to learn what you humans call “emotion.”


This post is a sponsored collaboration between Philips Norelco and Studio@Gawker.

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