"Auto ads are a family of ad formats that offer a simple and innovative way for you to monetize your content. With Auto ads, you place the same piece of ad code once on each page. After you've added the code, Google automatically shows ads at optimal times when they’re likely to perform well for you and provide a good experience for your users."
The new simpler code does put ads in optimal places for you, such as in headers, embedded in long articles, and in lists. So If you don't want place the ads yourself or are not sure how to, this might be an option for you.
There are nice global settings to let you pick what kind of ads you want to use: Text & display ads, In-feed ads, In-article ads, Matched content, Anchor ads, and Vignette ads. You can read a description of each type under "Ad formats" here.
I turned on this feature for sites. However I now see too many ads on the page, and it's not how I want to present Blog Oklahoma. So I'm going to be turning off most of the Auto Ad features.
Normally I just have 3 manually placed ads on the bottom of the page. This way I can have the benefit of ads without the annoying clutter. More ads might benefit me more, but at the cost of how I present the site. I'll stick with the manual placement.
I took a screenshot of a long article from blogoklahoma.net with Auto Ads turned on. I have the ads highlighted.
Note: At the time I posted this I'm still in the process of adjusting the ad settings so the Auto Ads could still be showing.