Automated #2: Self-Driving Delivery – A Mechanical Menagerie Special Issue

Credit: TODAY   

Another job may be on its way out at Domino’s. The company collaborated with Ford to produce a self-driving car for the purposes of delivering pizzas without a driver. It’s currently being deployed in Ann Arbor, Michigan where their headquarters are located and is being tested before the program is expanded. When the car arrives at the delivery location it announces itself, asks you to enter the last 4 digits of your phone number and then lowers the back window where the pizzas are stored. After you take the pizza the car thanks you and takes off. Now you may be thinking Domino’s is planning on replacing drivers and while they didn’t explicitly say it here it’s fairly clear what they are attempting to do. For now that isn’t possible. Even cars which are capable of self-driving with no human input still require human drivers by law. This restriction is in place mainly because they aren’t fully trusted yet and the possibility of malfunctioning is possible. Perhaps within the next decade it will be lifted and driving will be revolutionized but delivery drivers should be careful. Your job is next.

Flipping Wieners

Credit: FZIchannel

If you remember Flippy, the burger flipping robot, then you’ll be excited to know that they bratwurst situation is under control as well. For all of the advanced robotics I’ve featured here this robot isn’t really that complicated. It’s just an arm holding a pair of tongs which flips the sausages on a grill. When they’re cooked it moves them to a plate. On a pad in front of the arm you can view your place in line as well as when you can expect to eat. It’s really not too advanced since it was made last year and I don’t think it’s supposed to be either. Their company is not specifically concerned with cornering the market on brat magic but is actually a computer science institute and wanted to demonstrate their skills here. Nevertheless, flipping wieners has now been accomplished by robots.

https://www.fzi.de/startseite/

Food ATMs

Little Caesars is now getting on board with automation. They have introduced the Pizza Portal, an app which lets you order the pizza, pay and then pick it up at a store, no wait necessary. They were deployed throughout Tucson, Arizona and will be tested in anticipation of a national implementation in 2018. According to David Scrivano, CEO of Little Caesars, he anticipates that as they are introduced that the company will hire more people in order to help with questions.

Credit: Sprinkle Cupcakes

Another example listed in the article was the Cupcake ATM. Sprinkle Cupcakes is a company that makes all of your sweet baked goods and it has released the ATM to speed up delivery times. The ATM has a touchscreen, a slot for credit cards and a rotating door. When you pay for your selection the robotic arm behind the scenes grabs a box with a cupcake in it, places it at the revolving door and then the door swings around, presenting you with your choice. This enables the ATM to work 24/7, a unique feature other restaurateurs should seize upon since it enables people to eat at any time with no restrictions. Similarly to Little Caesars, they believe that this will not impact any jobs and from my perspective it would probably increase them. If you’re selling more food you’ll need more staff to handle the increase in production and the increased popularity will spread it quickly, opening new stores and requiring new staff.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2017/08/07/little-caesers-pizza-portal-lets-customers-skip-line/540703001/#

The Mobile Pizza Store

This design features an innovative attempt to reimagine food trucks and spread the reach of restaurants beyond their stores. The truck is a small pizza shop and is meant to work autonomously. Simply type your order into a touchscreen and the pizza will be made automatically along with its toppings. You can also order a drink in the same way. There is one employee to help customers and control the truck. Would you like to see one of these in your town?

Designers: Cody Moore, Jordan Jones, Yulin Liu, Aditi Vyas, Tom Rouine & Fernando Zeledon

https://www.yankodesign.com/2017/08/28/autonomous-food-trucks-of-the-future/

The Dying Jobs

If you’re curious about the scope of automation that’s about to come you can view the chart I found. It lays out that 50% of jobs will be eliminated by robots in 10-20 years. Perhaps it may seem hyperbolic but read the study first and consider your current line of work. The jobs that will be impacted the most are janitors, cashiers, fast food workers, retail jobs, laborers and secretaries.

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/this-chart-spells-out-in-black-and-white-just-how-many-jobs-will-be-lost-to-robots-2017-05-31

 

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