Fast Food

Carl’s Jr. Might Be The First Major Fast Food Chain Run By Robots


Fast food workers may be in for some troublesome news. After a visit to Eatsa, a fully-automated restaurant, the CEO of Carl’s Jr. has some ideas on how to improve his chain of restaurants.

Andy Puzder, Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s CEO, says that he wants to try opening a restaurant that has all-natural products that can be ordered through a kiosk. He told Business Insider that customers would never have to interact with a person while they’re there.

Eatsa, the inspiration behind Puzder’s dream, is an automated restaurant. Patrons can order their food through an iPad kiosk, pay with a credit or debit card and get their order through cubbies in a wall without having to talk to a single living person.

The humans that work there prepare the food and put it into the cubbies so that customers don’t have to interact with a single person.

Puzder says this idea was brought on by the government driving up cost of labor. He can’t afford to hire new workers.

It’s still remains to be seen how well such a major fast food company would do as a human-less unit. While some are comfortable enough to appreciate the solitude of order their food, others may need human interaction to express their preferences and concerns.


Japan Created The World’s First Robot Farm And Here’s What It Can Do


Japan is really pushing forward with robotics. First, we got the pancake flipper, then the Sushi Robot and now a farm that’s fully operated by automatons will soon make its debut.

Tech Insider reports that Spread, a lettuce production company, will have a farm that only hires robots to harvest lettuce. About 30,000 heads of lettuce will be ready for shipment every day, reportedly. That’s nearly 11 million a year.

The machines, however, will be more like conveyor belts with arms attached than the cybernetic farmers we were picturing in our heads. Ah well, it’s probably for the best.

Scheduled to open in 2017, Spread’s Kameoka Plant will increase productivity. The robotic farm will also reduce labor costs by 50 percent, cut energy consumption by 30 percent and use 98 percent recycled water for the crops.

All these benefits will potentially lower costs for consumers, said a spokesperson for Spread.

Spread’s robotic farm is set to open sometime next year.


The Scary Reality Of A Robot That Taught Itself How To Make Pancakes


While five Terminator movies and a short-lived television show have taught me to be wary of sentient machines, I can’t help but feel delighted that there are automatons out there making pancakes.

Delighted and uneasy.

A group of scientists from RoboHow have created a robot that’s capable of learning to cook from both humans and the Internet.

How it works

According to MIT Technology Review, the PR2 robot learns by analyzing human motions, like whisking batter or flipping pancakes. It scans text from websites to learn any additional information it needs to complete a task.

Semantic Parsing, how machines analyze human language into information, allows the robot to learn all the details necessary to execute a dish. This includes how to open a jar, mix batter and even flip a pancake.

Why we’re scared

Once one PR2 learns how to cook a dish, it uploads that knowledge to a database that all RoboHow robots can access.

With an army of robotic chefs, it’s only a matter of time before working as a cook becomes an obsolete profession.

Scanning information from community-driven wikiHow might also not be the safest thing. What prevents them from learning other motions like swiping a switchblade or shooting a slingshot?

RoboHow must have accounted for all those things. Right?

According to Michael Beetz, a member of RoboHow, the robots can be on the market in as little as ten years. The reality is quickly approaching.

Until a misplaced code or line of text sparks the inevitable robotic revolution, I might stick to making my own pancakes.



In Case You Missed It: Real Life ‘Wallace & Gromit’ Pancake Maker [VIDEO]


I’m a full-bred American, but something about the charming British adventures of “Wallace & Gromit” have always had a soft spot in my heart. Their witty, time-saving inventions always amaze me and we were delighted to find that someone actually spent A LOT of time making this Wallace & Gromit-inspired pancake maker.


The Most Inconvenient/Awesome Way To Pop Popcorn

I’ve got a confession to make: I like food. I like it a lot. I like it so much that sometimes, I eat snacks, even when I’m not that hungry (‘MURICA)! I tend to prefer salty to sweet things, pretzels, potato chips, and, of course, popcorn. But that bagged-and-boxed stuff is like eating grease-coated arterial blockage, and air poppers are so loud.

Great news – these Swedish students have solved all my problems.

Their popcorn popper, dubbed the ‘Oncle Sam’, apparently focuses on achieving perfection one kernel at a time through a carefully constructed Rube-Goldberg-esque machine, complete with a tea candle, some salt, and a little oil. Is it quick and easy as a microwave bag of popcorn? No. But is it fun to look at? Kinda!

And by the time I manage a whole bowlful, I’ll be starving. Win-win. Thanks, Sweden!

via psfk