Robot lawn mover
Seattle startup Picnic has emerged from stealth mode with a system that assembles custom pizzas with little human intervention. According to GeekWire, “Picnic’s platform assembles up to 300 12-inch pizzas per hour, far faster than most restaurants would be able to make the dough, bake and serve the pizzas.” From the report: That speed comes in handy in places where large numbers of orders come in during a rush, such as at a stadium or in large cafeterias. It’s also compact enough that it could theoretically be installed in a food truck. Machines have been making frozen pizzas for years, but Picnic’s robot differs in a few respects. It’s small enough to fit in most restaurant kitchens, the recipes can be easily tweaked to suit the whims of the restaurants, and — most importantly — the ingredients are fresh.
There are also a few details that may save Picnic’s pizzas from tasting as if a robot made them. For starters, the dough preparation, sauce making and baking — the real art of pizza — is left in the capable, five-fingered hands of people. The robot is also highly customizable, comprised of a series of modules that dole out whatever toppings you want in whichever order you choose. Once an order for a pizza has been made, it enters a digital queue in the platform, which starts making the pie as soon as the dough is put in place. The robot has a vision system that allows it to make adjustments if the pie is slightly off-center. It’s also hooked up to the internet and sends data back to Picnic so the system can learn from mistakes.
The report says their business model is essentially pizza-as-a-service. “Restaurant owners pay a regular fee in return for the system and ongoing maintenance as well as software and hardware updates,” reports GeekWire. “The startup has launched at Centerplate, a caterer in the Seattle Mariners’ T-Mobile Park baseball stadium, as well as Zaucer, a restaurant in Redmond, Wash.”
It was pity stayed his hand.
“Pity I don’t have any more bullets,” thought Frito.
— _Bored_of_the_Rings_, a Harvard Lampoon parody of Tolkein