The humanless restaurant = the paperless office?

by Wendy M Grossman | posted on 17 May 2012

Among a list of the world's weirdest restaurants, Yahoo! lists this gem:

Wendy M Grossman

Robot Kitchen, Hong Kong: Pay a visit to Robot Kitchen in Hong Kong and you’ll be able to take a fascinating glimpse into the future, as robotic members of staff prepare and serve your meal. These automated waiters are able to take food orders through an on-board touch screen interface, as well as perform simple culinary tasks such as flipping burgers and omelettes. Sadly all the kinks haven’t quite been worked out yet, and Robot Kitchen has actually been forced to hire more staff than a regular restaurant to make sure the robots are functioning correctly.

Suddenly, it all seems clear to me: the notion of a world in which robots do all the work and humans are either retired or unemployed, depending on their (lack of) wealth and point of view, is the new version of the paperless office - which has just never happened for most people. (I recall a friend commenting that "the paperless office is about as much use as the paperless toilet".) It's just that instead of cooking and making things we'll be ministering to the robots that make things and cook things. And at a guess, they're going to be a lot fussier than yesterday's cars and today's computers.wg

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