White Castle, purveyors of tiny burgers and stoner fantasies, is running a pilot program testing a kitchen robot called Flippy, which will take over some kitchen duties like running the fryer and grill. That’s right, before we get robot umpires to definitively call balls and strikes or robot lifeguards to keep our swimmers safe, we are getting an almost fully autonomous robot in a QSR kitchen. This is likely a sign of things to come, with automation and robotics assuming back-of-house tasks with increasing frequency and efficiency though this could lead to some serious Matrix-level dystopia.
When I turned 30, I gave up driving entirely. Your humble blogger, you see, has a bit of an aggressive personality, and I came to realize that I was making myself and everybody around me miserable when I was on the road (I also got like 4 tickets in two months, surely a soCal record). My abdication of the drivers’ seat was well-timed, however, and I easily transitioned from the front seat of my Civic to the back seat of the burgeoning ride-share economy.
Last week in the parking lot of our local McDonald’s, I had my first Happy Meal in over twenty years (four-piece McNuggets, fries, and a Sprite). My boyfriend had found an online coupon, you see, which gave us a kid’s meal with the purchase of an extra value meal. I didn’t want to cook, he didn’t want to go through the hassle and wait for delivery, and we didn’t want to spend too much money.
Two weeks ago, we wrote about Black Lives Matter, last week about face masks. And now, it seems, these two unnecessarily divisive issues have coalesced, and companies have been facing criticism for dress code policies that allow or forbid employees from wearing Black Lives Matter face masks, pins, and other attire.
As restaurants and retailers begin to reopen their doors, market research has gone from a competitive advantage to a fundamental necessity. I’m not just saying this because I write a market research blog, I’m saying it because these are the times we live in.