In a scene reminiscent of the Pixar movie Wall-e, themed around a future where society became so inundated with consumer goods and laziness they could no longer walk or function, Starship Technologies, in conjunction with Postmates, is testing out new meal delivery robots in Washington D.C..
The pilot program sends customers a text message alerting them their meal delivery robot will be travelling along city sidewalks at 4 mph to their destination.
The consumer can then monitor the robots progress along its journey, as they await their egg foo young.
Upon arrival at its destination, the customer receives yet another text including an unlock code to open the top of their meal delivery robot and get their hot meal.
“This is the world’s first delivery robot,” Starship Technologies spokesman Henry Harris-Burland told NBC4 in Washington D.C., “Anything you can order online, it can deliver.”
While I’ll admit to occasionally daydreaming of a cold beer being delivered by a robot while watching TV comfortably on my own couch, I’m pretty sure it’s not a need for a society which already struggles with obesity and lack of physical activity.
And how are these robots not just waiting to be stolen?
Not to give anyone a criminal concept, but these things are ripe to be picked and not just for the food inside…maybe for ransom? At just 4 mph top speed you wouldn’t need a Fast and Furious style chase to apprehend your personal delivery robot.
On a more important note, while meal delivery is something we are quite fond of, especially meals kits that come with perfectly portioned food, teach people cooking techniques and result in healthy meals to eat, please society, don’t make this delivery mechanism a part of our future.
Postmates has built quite a business delivering food and goods throughout major cities, almost like the Uber of food delivery. They claim to empower local food providers by increasing their reach and brand, for that I say hell yeah Postmates – just skip past the robot idea and keep employing kids on bikes, and well-meaning college kids driving around town, knocking on doors and forcing us to quench our guilt by giving them a big tip.
Keep the little robots from crowding the sidewalks, causing a ruckus and reinforcing the ever-present tendency for us to be lazy.
I’ll even gladly give up on my beer delivery daydream.