Art & Craft

Robot waiters, chatbots, and AI image generation

I love technology. I work in tech and I am a big consumer of tech in its various forms. But I’m not blind about the shortcomings of a lot of technology, and part of what I find fun about using new technology is comparing how it actually performs with the marketing bluster about it.

Yesterday I went to a hotpot restaurant which had a robot waiter. Not so much the sleek, cool and futuristic robot that you might have imagined if you were asked a decade ago what the robots of today would look like. This robot had a cat face, played muzak-style elevator tunes, and needed rescuing when it got stuck on the edge of a wall. It was cute and novel, but only capable of bringing out dishes and returning to the kitchen. I’m sure if the human cooks and wait staff there were asked if it made any significant impact on their workload, the answer would be a no.

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