Last edit: 02. Apr. 2023, 17:46h

The future of gastronomy?

Have you been to McDonalds lately? I haven’t been there in a long time and now I’ve been there again and the short answer is:
If you have not been there for a long time, I understand very well.

Wikimedia Commons (’s_French_Fries_2.jpg)

How do I suddenly get the idea to report about it here? Isn’t it mostly about 3d printing, SailfishOS and the like? Yes, and every now and then it’s also about why I use Sailfish OS, for example, and don’t willy-nilly go to a local electronics store and get myself a Google Pixel or a Xiami or something similar:

With regard to McDonalds, I could also add that I don’t like going to a fattening plant voluntarily. Because that’s all McDonalds is today.
If possible, everything should be controlled via coupons, touch screens, local GPS or positioning around the restaurant, payment should be made by card or cell phone, there should be as little interaction with the staff as possible, and if there is, don’t open your mouth.

Hier mal ein paar Marketing-Slogans von McDonalds:

  • The somewhat different restaurant. (1971)
  • Eating with fun. (1978)
  • Good thing there’s McDonald’s. (1982)
  • The place where you like to be, because people eat well. (1987)
  • McDonald’s is just good! (1991)
  • Every time a good time. (1999)
  • I love it. (2003)
  • Just believe in magic. (2021)

"Food with fun" / "Every time a good time." / "I love it." - This is a macabre joke, not an advertising slogan.

Here is how the process works:
You drive into the parking lot, plastered with camera equipment.
You open the front door and are greeted by 360-degree cameras that closely watch your way to the order terminal (there are 6 of them in this store).
There is still one checkout, where a completely demotivated employee stands, who suggests to the customer with every phase: Don’t come here and get the idea to pay cash.

So off to the terminal. There you simply have a standard online store. The data protection advantage is that the rest of your surfing behavior is not tracked here. On the other hand, they can, of course, simply pick up your fingerprint. Either way, you order your (let’s call it for lack of another word) food via the system.

In addition to various additional products, combination features, etc., you get the opportunity to use your smartphone with the McD app, which can of course analyze your behavior outside the restaurant. In return, you get a burger more to your full brick menu for the price of half an ice cream cone more or similar.
After skipping the "other customers also liked" categories ("Buy an ice cream, an apple turnover or something else!"), you can view the shopping cart again and then proceed to the payment screen.

A giant button for the EC card, credit card or PayPal with logos and bright colors. To scroll down below a button "Or pay cash with waiting time!".
So just don’t, because then you’ll get on the nerves of the poor lady at the cash register again. I don’t care, I’ll pay cash.
The look was so category, "Looks like 30, acts like 90." Probably the 90-year-olds were the last ones who could still think or something?

The result is a large, white plastic display with a number on it. It probably contains something like a Bluetooth transmitter, an RFC or NFC system, or something similar. Because if you put that on your table (which has a suspicious sticker with a number in silver with a slight elevation), after a few minutes another Lieferando fah... er I mean employee comes running and hands over what you ordered - social interaction undesirable. He looks for his way without having to think about where he has to go, because the display has him via an in-door tracking system (exactly I do not know what is used there, but as I said: Bluetooth, in-door GPS, Wifi or RFC/NFC in combination with the table it will probably be) tells him exactly where you are.

Now comes the "dining with fun" or "every time a good time" part. Small, crammed tables, screaming children, poor sound insulation, just the right combination of cheap furnishings with hard, but not too hard upholstery, which ensures that you don’t sit there too uncomfortably, but just don’t get the idea of wanting to linger. You practically feel like you’re sitting in a fattening farm.

At the next table, there is a touch display embedded in the table where the kids can draw and play "McDonald’s is the best" mini-games using McDonald’s characters and products as the main character in order to elicit the highest possible child loyalty (because no adult in their right mind would fall for this not very subtle manipulation) and thus force the parents to come back here.

As in the past, you can clear the tables yourself after connecting to the free WiFi to have your surfing behavior additionally checked.
Of course, this is not compulsory... You can also not connect to the WLan (for which you need an account including e-mail or phone number).

I think of "Just believe in Magic." and leave this horror wondering why they have not fully automated the operation behind the counter? A system gastronomy consisting of let’s say 30 parts, always combined in a different way.... isn’t that very easy to reproduce via a production line?

Does an employee have to stand there and fill fries into predefined packages? Or is that supposed to give me that good feeling they always talk about in advertising? Yes, but minimum-wage employees "prepare" the food for you, it’s not a robot system that fills cardboard machines into cups. It’s still manual labor.
Just like delivering products. The next step will be treadmills that run on or in the wall. Probably too expensive, but it’s only a matter of time before that happens.

McDonald’s is a pioneer... Hardly any other store is as automated as McDonald’s - not even Burger King, Kochlöffel, Subway or other restaurant chains. Let’s hope it stays that way. I don’t want to go out to eat like that. I understand everyone who prefers the delivery service.

Only on the glass one must do without... not the free one that comes with the menu... the total screening of the customer is meant.

Image source:’s_French_Fries_2.jpg, 230402


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