A Friendly Robot Barista

Our morning cup of coffee is not a luxury, but an essential barrier to the rest of the brutal world that is rushing towards us like a cavalry charge when our alarm clock sounds the advance as the sun comes up on a less than ready foot soldier in the battle for the new day.

As we’re never likely, nor should we expect, to have some faithful retainer perspiring over a hot espresso machine before we emerge from our pile of uncoordinated bedclothes to the new world order, wouldn’t it be nice to have a friendly robot barista hard at work?

A prototype is out there in the great city of Seattle, but it is plowing a lone furrow, just waiting to be cloned for the benefit of humanity. Zipwhip, a company that provides a web-texting portal, has manufactured a friendly robot barista that can be urged into activity by punching out a text message from a mobile phone (1,2). Unfortunately, it’s not mine.

Zipwhip say that they are not planning to flood the world with this very desirable robot, but to keep it sequestered away from the light of day in the depths of their Seattle boardroom. They have made the control code open source though, so some engineer can start to do the cloning job.

The prototype makes beautiful coffee whenever it is sent an appropriate text. It’s rumored that it is very even tempered and doesn’t require a smiley face at the end of a text, but will battle phlegmatically on regardless of the sentiment expressed about your espresso.

There is a bonus which is a must have for those living in busy households. It has the ability to write messages (with your name of course) on the foam with a printer loaded with food dye. Perhaps we can get little patriotic flags on appropriate holidays.

  1. http://blog.zipwhip.com/category/geeky-stuff/
  2. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-18166907

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