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Robotics Idle

Robot Serves Up 360 Hamburgers Per Hour 299

kkleiner writes "No longer will they say, 'He's going to end up flipping burgers.' Now, robots are taking even these ignobly esteemed jobs. San Francisco based Momentum Machines makes a robot called the Alpha that can churn out 360 gourmet burgers per hour. The company plans on launching the first ever burger restaurant chain with a cook staff made entirely of robots. You think Americans are obese right now? Just wait."
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Robot Serves Up 360 Hamburgers Per Hour

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  • Couch Potato (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Jetra ( 2622687 ) on Tuesday January 22, 2013 @07:54PM (#42663045)
    With no more entry level positions, maybe we can finally take over the world by using our free time to build death rays.
  • The Luddite Fallacy (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mfwitten ( 1906728 ) on Tuesday January 22, 2013 @07:56PM (#42663087)

    Read about it [] and understand it.

  • by Chemisor ( 97276 ) on Tuesday January 22, 2013 @08:26PM (#42663421)

    Time to reread Manna []. The cooks, the manager, the cleaning staff, and finally you, until nobody has any work or any money.

  • by Animats ( 122034 ) on Tuesday January 22, 2013 @08:28PM (#42663443) Homepage

    Automatic burger machines date back to the 1950s. Back then, everybody ate the same thing, so assembly-like type systems were useful. American Machine and Foundry built an automated fast-food outlet in the 1960s, but it wasn't cost-effective. McDonalds tried this out back in 2003. []

    It's not that it's technically difficult. It's that the volume required to make it profitable is higher than most fast food outlets can sell.

  • by tragedy ( 27079 ) on Tuesday January 22, 2013 @08:44PM (#42663641)

    The thing about that though is the question of what economic activity arises for people to participate in for employment. We're already living in an age where most of the useful labour is done by a relatively small percentage of the population. Most of the rest works in various types of service job. Robots like this can replace human workers in entire large segments of those service industries. Sure there are other service jobs, but there are a lot of them that really are of the replaceable with a simple shell script variety. With a little more machine intelligence, the majority of them probably are replaceable that way. Eventually, there won't be any low or no-skill jobs left. Even the jobs fixing the machines will be done by machines. The simple fact is that most people aren't high-skilled labour and even those who are highly skilled or are very, very good at their jobs often can't compete with a custom designed machine (shades of John Henry). The truth is that the new economy jobs that gradually replace the old ones are worse and worse and the typical labourer is going to have to sell their labour on what is increasingly a buyers market.

    The problem is that farming, mining, manufacturing, food service, retail sales, warehouse jobs, delivery, construction, etc. can all conceivably be replaced almost entirely by machines. The owners of the machines, farms, mines, factories, restaurants, stores, warehouses, delivery companies, construction companies, etc. will then be the only people producing the tangible things that the consumers truly need, while the majority of the consumers will be working in service jobs producing intangibles that people don't really need.

    In other words, we are in danger of transitioning to post-scarcity technology without transitioning to a post-scarcity economy. That leaves most people, at best, working themselves to death in completely unproductive, pointless jobs.

  • by esldude ( 1157749 ) on Tuesday January 22, 2013 @08:52PM (#42663729)
    Is that worse than wondering where your food preparers hands have been since they were last washed? And though adjacent to the burger, they didn't come into contact with it. Plus there are food grade greases used in such devices that are safe around food preparation like this.

"my terminal is a lethal teaspoon." -- Patricia O Tuama