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Wing Zone goes all in on robot fry cook

ZDNet

It's official: the robots are here to stay. Another fast food restaurant has opted to place a robot cook in the back of house, marking a swift and dramatic shift away from humans in fast food. This week's update comes via Wing Zone, which offers made-to-order chicken wings. This chain is partnering with Miso Robotics to make Flippy 2 a part of its standard build for all future restaurant locations. This is significant in that it goes well beyond the trials and testbeds we've seen before, and it suggests a much broader commitment to automated fry cooks going forward. "With over 100 new shops in our current development pipeline, our technology roadmap relies heavily on strategic partnerships with companies like Miso, a pioneer in the field of food automation, that has the knowledge, data and resources to design robotics solutions that maximize our efficiency and provide a better overall customer experience," said David Bloom, Chief Development and Operating Officer of Wing Zone.


Addressing Labor Shortages with Automation

Communications of the ACM

U..S. employment statistics hit a new milestone last year, but not a positive one. In August 2021, almost 4.3 million workers quit their jobs, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. That's the highest number since the department began tracking voluntary resignations. Their reasons for leaving their jobs vary--the numbers track people who quit for a different position, as well as those who quit without having another job lined up. While the reasons for quitting vary, one thing is clear: Businesses are having a tough time getting employees to come back.


Scientists develop edible TAPE that can hold burritos together and prevent leakages

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Unraveled, chaotic meals could be a thing of the past for burrito lovers thanks to a group of engineering students from Johns Hopkins University and their lunch-saving invention. Dubbed'Tastee Tape', the invention is simply edible sticky tape designed to hold a burrito together while it's being eaten. 'Tastee Tape allows you to put full faith in your tortilla and enjoy your meal, mess-free,' said Tyler Guarino, who led the project. Unraveled, chaotic meals could be a thing of the past for burrito lovers thanks to a group of engineering students from Johns Hopkins University and their lunch-saving invention. Dubbed'Tastee Tape', the invention is simply edible sticky tape designed to hold a burrito together while it's being eaten The team tested a'multitude' of ingredients and combinations before settling on a final recipe.


Chatbots and a tortilla-making robot: Chipotle's AI

#artificialintelligence

"With AI, we can really target and segment who gets what message and based on previous purchases and viewing habits. We can see how we can customize our messaging," Park said. An example of this AI-driven marketing approach is the way the chain -- which has some 2,000 locations in the U.S., Canada and Europe -- targets the 27 million loyalty rewards members who have downloaded its mobile app. Chipotle uses recommendation algorithms to send notifications to users of the app about deals tailored to the different foods they've ordered before, therefore improving their customer experience, according to the company. Chipotle also uses AI to improve customer service.


Robot chef is trained to taste food at different chewing stages

Daily Mail - Science & tech

A robot chef has been trained to'taste' food at different stages of the chewing process – just like humans do. The machine, created at the University of Cambridge, consists of a probe that can detect salt levels in food attached to the end of a robotic arm. Experts used the robot to taste scrambled eggs during different stages of mastication, including a runny liquid as it would appear just prior to swallowing. According to the scientists, robotic chefs that'taste test' dishes instead of humans could be a fixture of busy restaurant kitchens of the future. A robot'chef' has been trained to taste food at different stages of the chewing process to assess whether it's sufficiently seasoned. The perception of taste is a complex process in humans that has evolved over millions of years.


Chipotle launches a tech-focused venture fund

ZDNet

Greg Nichols covers robotics, AI, and AR/VR for ZDNet. A full-time journalist and author, he writes about tech, travel, crime, and the economy for global media outlets and reports from across the U. Some of the most interesting tech development is happening in an unusual space: Fast food. From burger-flipping robots to drone delivery and Amazon-level logistics, the face of fast food is changing quickly. Chipotle has announced a new venture fund called Cultivate Next, which will make early-stage investments into strategically aligned companies. Why does a quick-serve chain need a venture fund?


How Restaurant AI Is Evolving Rapidly - Pioneering Minds

#artificialintelligence

Artificial Intelligence AI has infiltrated every aspect of our lives, and the restaurant industry is no exception. Miso Robotics’ AI kitchen assistant, “Flippy,” assists with grilling, frying, prepping, and plating. Restaurants that integrate AI into their POS systems benefit from analyzing data generated by the system. In 2019, McDonald’s began using predictive AI technologies and projecting orders in drive-thrus. By analyzing past data, stores could reduce wait times by 30 seconds on average. KFC uses face recognition technology at kiosks to recognize return customers and personalize their experience. It employs artificial intelligence face recognition technology to determine what a client might be interested in purchasing based on gender, facial expressions, and other visual characteristics. In the restaurant industry, artificial intelligence has played the most important role in improving the customer experience. Restaurants have a lot of data that isn’t being exploited, and as a result, owners aren’t getting a decent return on their investment. AI and ML work together to provide personalized suggestions to users by analyzing individual search histories.


Council Post: Should Your Next Restaurant Employee Be A Robot?

#artificialintelligence

Angela Diffly is co-founder of the Restaurant Technology Network, a membership community from Hospitality Technology. But before you think humans are being replaced, check out how the restaurant industry is rolling them in, and rolling them out, just right. In a November 2021 survey fielded by the National Restaurant Association, 77% of restaurant operators said their restaurant did not have enough employees to support existing customer demand. And as a result of being understaffed, 65% say their restaurant cut hours of operation on days that it is open for business. Big brands like Buffalo Wild Wings, White Castle, Chili's, Chipotle and El Pollo Loco are making bold moves, blending shiny new robotic objects into everyday operations like a secret sauce, creating magic from kitchen to counter, and beyond.


Jack in the Box turns to robots to solve staffing challenges

ZDNet

Greg Nichols covers robotics, AI, and AR/VR for ZDNet. A full-time journalist and author, he writes about tech, travel, crime, and the economy for global media outlets and reports from across the U. Flippy 2.0 prepares curly fries for Jack in the Box. A few weeks back my kids went bananas for a robotic server at a local California Pizza Kitchen. For my next feat of parenting magic, I just might stop by Jack in the Box. There are some things that machines are simply better at doing than humans, but humans still have plenty going for them.


AI is Changing Our Restaurants

#artificialintelligence

According to research by the National Restaurant Association Research and Knowledge Group, the restaurant industry will be drastically different by the year 2030. WIthin a decade, it could be possible for an individual to approach a drive-through in an autonomous vehicle, order through an AI-powered voice ordering assistant, and eat food that was prepared by robots. One of the most startling aspects of this interaction is that there is not a single human involved besides the consumer. These changes will cause massive implications for every aspect of the sector, most importantly for the workers and consumers. Restaurants and food joints, once reliable venues for human interaction, will be important for the implementation of artificial intelligence (AI) technology.