Mashgin computer cashier recognizes different food items as well as any human would
Doomsayers about the future have a lot to say about things that might be extinct before the turn of the next century. Elephants. Whales. Rainforests. The middle class. Generally, it’s bad news.
Next year, Mashgin may give us a possible impending extinction that’s nothing but good news: the end of waiting in line. Invented by Muul Dhankhkar, a former Bell Labs engineer, it’s essentially the equivalent of those automated tellers we’ve been using at the grocery store for the past ten years. Instead of using a bar code scanner, Mashgin connects a high-resolution camera to advanced analytical software.
The result is you can put a plate of food beneath it — any plate of food, no matter how complex. Mashgin will recognize the component parts, ring up a total, and run your credit card or cell phone payment. In trials, it’s completed the task in a fraction of the time a human cashier would.
Although Mashgin’s team promises the end of waiting in line, anybody who’s queued up for the automated cashier at supermarkets knows this is a bit of a stretch given what they offer. ATMs and those automated post office kiosks didn’t eliminate lines in those spaces, either.
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