When I first heard about some stores offering self serve checkout, it was confusing to me how something like that would work. My first thought was, doesn't that make it easier to shoplift? How would a machine know what you are checking out and paying for it and what are you sliding by the machine?

It wasn't until this service came to the Binghamton area, did I start to understand how it all works out. Initially, I was reluctant to try it, out of fear that I somehow would screw something up.

Finally, I gave it a try at one of the area supermarkets and except for not knowing where everything is, like where does the money go, the process turned out smooth. But the love was short lived.

Now, more often than not, something goes wrong, and the screen tells me I have to wait for an attendant. Most of the time it's because the machine didn't register the fact that I indeed DID put the items in the bag. I hate when the voice says 'Put the item in the bag' over and over, even though I already did. You can't proceed beyond that point.

The problem is, I believe, is if you have an item that is lighter that air, like a bag of cotton balls or a pack of floss, how in hell is the machine going to sense that? I'm assuming it senses you put the item in the bag by weight? So, do I have to slam dunk any light items so it feels some weight? I'm confused.

It's annoying, and defeats the purpose of using self checkout to get out of the store quicker. Sometimes, you have to wait, or find, the attendant.

I guess the best thing to do, it go to a check out that has a real live person. Plus it helps keep jobs. So put that item in your bag, you cold hearted self serve machine.