New Zealand nerds postulating about the future of the sex robot industry. Robot prison guards beginning real-world trials in South Korea. A RoboCop remake currently in pre-production. The robo-apocalypse is coming, and I feel… hungry?
With all of these anarchic automata afoot, Paleofuture did well to wax nostalgic about The Disco-Blasting Robot Waiters of 1980s Pasadena, who—when not delivering your order directly to the floor after random bouts of radio interference—would apparently “scoot around; bringing trays of chow mein, spareribs and fortune cookies to customers’ tables” while shouting ‘That’s not my problem,’ accompanied by a short blast of disco music” whenever their internal logic trees failed to decode a customer’s question.
I suppose if I’d had the fortune to grow up near Two Panda Deli, I, too, would think fondly of their two R2D2-imitating waiter bots from time to time. Fortunately, the robo food service industry is alive (in a manner of speaking) and well these days. The only trouble is, it’s not exactly in downtown LA.
According to the Robotics Business Review (yes, it’s a thing), Japan, China, Thailand, Korea, and Vietnam have all introduced robot-staffed restaurants in recent years. One of the most popular is the Dalu Robot Restaurant in Jinan, China, which “features six custom built robot servers with some that resemble the classic automatons from 1950s science fiction, and others that are basically wheeled tables. Even better (if you’re a single DroidDude, that is), “there are also two more feminine robots that greet customers as they enter.”
If creepy steampunk wannabes aren’t really your thing though, there’s always Bangkok’s Hajime Robot Restaurant — which, to be clear, neither serves robots dinner or serves them as dinner, but rather “employs” them to do the serving themselves…
Peep more robots serving food over at Motherboard.