Our Robot Overlords Brought Beer!

We are not taking over the world. Trust us and just keep drinking.
We are not taking over the world. Trust us and just keep drinking.

What a glorious day here in Hippo-Land (still the most undeveloped amusement park in the world). You have no idea the amount of joy I feel when I wake up and find my two favorite topics – the subjugation of humanity by sentient mechanoids and beer – neatly tied together in one fun article.

“Now you just wait a minute there Mr. Bill,” you cry, “what about sex? We’re pretty sure you like sex.”

Well, sure, I’m getting older, not deader. I still appreciate the fine turn of a woman’s calf, the way her gluteous maximus undulates slowly when empowered by a pair of high heels, the gentle teasing of her curvaceous cleavage as it attempts to break free from ….. HEY! You’re getting me off topic here.

Stop that!

Bad Hippo!

Anyway, as noted in the title of the article our robot overlords, at least the Chinese ones, have brought beer. And maybe some really good dim sum as well. Ken Teh from Associated Press has all the news on this startling development.

Service with a smile also comes with an electronic voice at the Dalu Robot restaurant, where the hotpot meals are not as famous yet as the staff who never lose their patience and never take tips.

The restaurant, which opened this month in Jinan in northern Shandong province, is touted as China’s first robot hotpot eatery where robots resembling Star Wars droids circle the room carrying trays of food in a conveyor belt-like system.

More than a dozen robots operate in the restaurant as entertainers, servers, greeters and receptionists. Each robot has a motion sensor that tells it to stop when someone is in its path so customers can reach for dishes they want.

The service industry in China has not always kept up with the country’s rapid economic growth, and can be quite basic in some restaurants, leading customers in the Dalu restaurant to praise the robots.

“They have a better service attitude than humans,” said Li Xiaomei, 35, who was visiting the restaurant for the first time.

“Humans can be temperamental or impatient, but they don’t feel tired, they just keep working and moving round and round the restaurant all night,” Li said.

Inspired by space exploration, robot technology and global innovation, the restaurant’s owner, Zhang Yongpei, said he hopes his restaurant will show the world China is a serious competitor in developing technology.

“I hope this new concept shows that China is forward-thinking and innovative,” Zhang said.

As customers enter the dimly lit restaurant lined with blinking neon lights to simulate a futuristic environment, a female robot decorated with batting eyelashes greets people with an electronic “welcome.”

During the meal, crowds of up to 100 customers, are entertained by a dancing and talking robot that looks more like a mannequin with a dress, flapping its arms around in a stiff motion.

Zhang said he hopes to roll out 30 robots — which cost $6,000 each — in the coming months and eventually develop robots with human-like qualities that serve customers at their table and can walk up and down the stairs.

There’s no word on whether you can order without MSG. Since it’s a pleasure and taste enhancer, I would guess not.

After all, our robot overlords want you sluggish and happy when the final assault comes.

Nevertheless, despite the dire warnings from Isaac Asimov, none of these robots are being constructed with the 3 laws.

“What three laws,” you ask?


1. A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
2. A robot must obey orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.

Even more insidious are the customer reactions noted above. Pleased that the robots are personable, within their programming, and able to work ceaselessly, they seem happy to be served by their new electronic slave laborers. I wonder how they’ll feel when they face the robotic Ragnarok?

Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Oh, and before I forget, Happy Holidays!

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