Sunday, July 29, 2018

"Automation At Both Ends Of The Food Business"

I am really having trouble seeing how automation will create more jobs than it destroys. And especially at the entry-to-the-workforce level where folks would (hopefully) get on the first rung of an ascending (hopefully) ladder.

Coding! Isn't that what we tell people in coal mining and journalism and other dying businesses?

First up, CNBC:

This weed-killing AI robot can tell crops apart
A slew of AI weed killers are on the horizon and have the potential to disrupt the multibillion dollar pesticides business. Among them is Swiss-company ecoRobotix and its weed-killing robot.

It's solar-powered and can kill weeds for 12 hours straight without an operator at the helm. Through artificial intelligence, cameras and two robotic arms, the table-looking robot sprays a dose of herbicide on weeds but not the crops. EcoRobotix uses 20 times less herbicide than traditional methods that spray entire fields.

Founded in 2011, ecoRobotix develops autonomous weeding robots, which help farmers to produce healthier food with a more efficient and sustainable use of herbicides. The company carried out pilot projects in Europe and closed a $10.7 million Series B financing round in May....MORE
And from LA Eater:

Pasadena’s Burger-Flipping Robot Will Now Fry Chicken at Dodger Stadium
Flippy is quickly automating the fast food industry
The future of fast food automation comes ever-closer to reality today, as news is out that Flippy, the burger-loving robot worker attracting national attention, is heading to Dodger Stadium. According to USA Today, Flippy will start up in August, frying chicken tenders and making tater tots.

For those unfamiliar, Flippy is an automated robot made up primarily of a multi-functional arm that’s capable of flipping burgers at a pretty incredible sustained rate. The Pasadena-based Miso Robotics company built Flippy to maximize production in the fast food sector, and has been testing out its viability in the kitchen of local burger restaurant CaliBurger. After a few initial tweaks the robot has been flipping like mad, turning out reportedly thousands of burgers with complete success.

Now Flippy is heading up to Dodger Stadium to try to revolutionize the stadium dining industry. Sports and live events are notoriously hard on even the most seasoned operators (the Dodgers use Chicago-based concessions company Levy), as natural breaks in the show often lead to tens of thousands of people wanting food all at once, making timing and precision a key factor....MORE