clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Watch a Robot That Knows When You Need a Beer Refill

Hillary Dixler Canavan is Eater's restaurant editor and the author of the publication's debut book, Eater: 100 Essential Restaurant Recipes From the Authority on Where to Eat and Why It Matters (Abrams, September 2023). Her work focuses on dining trends and the people changing the industry — and scouting the next hot restaurant you need to try on Eater's annual Best New Restaurant list.

Behold the latest in service bot technology: A group of computer scientists at Cornell have created a robot that can predict when you need a refill and pour your drink for you. At least, it can 82% of the time, according to Slate.

Like other drink-oriented bots, the Cornell model features a PR2 robot. But unlike past bartending robots, the Cornell bot uses a Microsoft Kinect sensor to evaluate human actions and then predict and anticipate needs. Unfortunately, the robot can only predict one second into the future, which means it could easily guess wrong and pour a drink on a lap or table. Even so, predicting human activity is a pretty remarkable step in creating the ultimate service bot. Have a look:

Video: Human Activity Anticilation

· Human Activity Anticilation [YouTube]
· Finally, a Robot That Knows When You Want It to Pour You a Beer [Slate]
· All Robots Coverage on Eater [-E-]