Im proud of McDonalds



  • So this is a SW topic, but in it are some pictures of McDonalds making it so they don't have to hire nearly as many people, while paying them $15/hr for mindless work.

    Literally replacing the employees with computers. Hell yes.



  • They have been getting ready for that for a long time. For decades they have been hiring people just for the sake of hiring them and not because they needed to employ so many people. It's been part of the national welfare system, for all intents and purposes, for a long time. And a good one because it provided good job training and such. Overall, McDonald's is a pretty good company (vegetarian scams aside, grrrr.)



  • It's time for basic income. Let's finally reap the promise of the future when robots can do everything and we just enjoy our time here on earth.



  • This comes to mind with robots doing everything...

    Youtube Video



  • As someone who's always done hobby robotics, I can confidently say that this is a VERY good idea. Figure I'll be worth a whole lot more money being able to fix all those robots.



  • How can it not be good? Everything at a McDonald's, or Jack in the Box, Burger King, Wendy's, Taco Bell, etc. is designed around humans trying as hard as they can do act like robots. All of it. Even the interfaces for most of the ordering is done through a semi-robotic interface where all human aspects of the interaction are removed so that moving to an actual robotic isn't just easy to do, it's easier to do!

    We are used to ordering through a speaker, sometimes already ordering through a touchpad, paying through a touch screen and more. And all human interaction is always annoying and unnecessarily slow. We stand at registers waiting for someone to help us. We talk to a speaker that is full of noise. Most customers are wishing for the human elements to be removed already. The only piece that we are missing is automation of handing our food to us, and that part is pretty simple to do for sure.



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    And all human interaction is always annoying and unnecessarily slow.

    Not all. I'm not convinced by automation at restaurants and supermarkets. Certainly, at supermarkets I try and avoid the automated tills. It is definitely slower because I am obviously slower at scanning items through the till than a professional checkout operator who does it 35 hours a week. I'm painfully slow! Plus, I don't have admin rights, so if something goes wrong I have to wait for an employee to come and fix it.

    Plus, you know, a lot of people enjoy the human interaction. A McDonald's employee urging me to "have a nice day" may be a little contrived, but it still makes me happy.



  • @Carnival-Boy said:

    Not all. I'm not convinced by automation at restaurants and supermarkets. Certainly, at supermarkets I try and avoid the automated tills. It is definitely slower because I am obviously slower at scanning items through the till than a professional checkout operator who does it 35 hours a week. I'm painfully slow! Plus, I don't have admin rights, so if something goes wrong I have to wait for an employee to come and fix it.

    Having worked as a grocery cashier, a grocery bagger and as a Burger King (just like McDonald's) cashier I feel that these are very different.

    Grocery checkout isn't automated at all, it's just moving the manual labour from the cashier to you. That's not automation in any form. It's horrible. Everything about it is bad. But modern automated systems like Germany has requires nothing like that, you just walk out of the store and everything is scanned as you exit, all automated.

    When they are talking about automating McDonald's, they are not saying that you will go in the back, make your own food, put in the resulting mean into a cash register and then assembling it yourself before leaving, but that would match the self checkout model from the grocery. Instead they mean machines that drop the fries on a time and package them for you. Put your order together and all you have to do is swipe your credit card.

    With automation you get the same interaction that you do now, just without all of the costly people behind the scenes. It doesn't mean replacing paid workers with customers.



  • @Carnival-Boy said:

    A McDonald's employee urging me to "have a nice day" may be a little contrived, but it still makes me happy.

    In America they are rarely happy and rarely talk to you. We are a much grumpier country.

    I do enjoy that interaction too, but I would take lower cost, faster service and fresher food with greater accuracy in exchange for it.



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    With automation you get the same interaction that you do now, just without all of the costly people behind the scenes. It doesn't mean replacing paid workers with customers.

    Ah yes, good point.



  • I wonder how much automation they hope to do? You will always need a manager in the store, of course. Or a mechanic / manager. Do they hope to have robots clean the tables and floors? What about cleaning the parking lots? How will security work?

    Clearly stores will not be unmanned at first. But there are vending machines the world over that don't have humans at that and they work, mostly. There used to be automats where you would just pay and food came out (humans working like robots behind the scenes - see "That Touch of Mink" to see one in action) they could do that today - make the food prep area a sealed box and you just put in your order and food pops out.

    Or maybe they move to the Sonic model (it's an Oklahoma drive up chain in the southern US) where the restaurant itself is already sealed and humans just do the delivery from the booth to the cars or tables. You never go inside those already and they are very popular.



  • Yeah I wouldn't be surprised if McDonalds figures out a way to create autonomous janitors who clean the toilets, tables parking lot etc.

    I doubt it'll come full circle until only electronic payments are the only accepted form of payment.

    Security is already achievable simply lock all access to the food area's behind bars, pass the food through a tiny opening somewhere and deny all human access unless your an employee.

    ...

    sounds a lot like prison...



  • @DustinB3403 said:

    Yeah I wouldn't be surprised if McDonalds figures out a way to create autonomous janitors who clean the toilets, tables parking lot etc.

    Likely very high on their list of things to figure out. If they didn't have to clean the restrooms it seems like hiring staff would be easier, too.



  • @DustinB3403 said:

    Yeah I wouldn't be surprised if McDonalds figures out a way to create autonomous janitors who clean the toilets, tables parking lot etc.

    Parking lots could be handled by a Roomba device, just a big one.



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    @DustinB3403 said:

    Yeah I wouldn't be surprised if McDonalds figures out a way to create autonomous janitors who clean the toilets, tables parking lot etc.

    Parking lots could be handled by a Roomba device, just a big one.

    NYC was investigating automated street sweepers awhile ago. That could be the base technology. With Google's self-driving tech this could easily be accomplished (albeit expensive).



  • @coliver said:

    @scottalanmiller said:

    @DustinB3403 said:

    Yeah I wouldn't be surprised if McDonalds figures out a way to create autonomous janitors who clean the toilets, tables parking lot etc.

    Parking lots could be handled by a Roomba device, just a big one.

    NYC was investigating automated street sweepers awhile ago. That could be the base technology. With Google's self-driving tech this could easily be accomplished (albeit expensive).

    Nothing is more expensive than a union worker, even if the wages themselves are not high, it tends to be a low efficiency rate so you need to hire more people (and that means more sweeper machines too.)

    Going fully automated could reduce the total number of machines needed, plus a huge number of staff and staff is where the bulk of the money is. Machines that can run 24x7, even on holidays is huge. No weekend pay, no overtime pay, no holiday pay and streets that are uniformly cleaner because they run all of the time.



  • @coliver said:

    @scottalanmiller said:

    @DustinB3403 said:

    Yeah I wouldn't be surprised if McDonalds figures out a way to create autonomous janitors who clean the toilets, tables parking lot etc.

    Parking lots could be handled by a Roomba device, just a big one.

    NYC was investigating automated street sweepers awhile ago. That could be the base technology. With Google's self-driving tech this could easily be accomplished (albeit expensive).

    Well if you factor in the cost of reduced insurance for the city, reduced insurance premiums (less employees), and just everything related to the "employee driver" you'd likely come out on the less costly side of it.

    Sure you'd still have a maintenance crew to maintain, but if you could cut the work-force by even 1/4 you'd be saving a ton of money upfront.



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    @coliver said:

    @scottalanmiller said:

    @DustinB3403 said:

    Yeah I wouldn't be surprised if McDonalds figures out a way to create autonomous janitors who clean the toilets, tables parking lot etc.

    Parking lots could be handled by a Roomba device, just a big one.

    NYC was investigating automated street sweepers awhile ago. That could be the base technology. With Google's self-driving tech this could easily be accomplished (albeit expensive).

    Nothing is more expensive than a union worker

    And that's double for a public union worker. There is no one in the meetings who actually represents the public, so work ethic is low and pay is super high (for the amount of work being done).



  • No arguments to the cost. This would have the same feeling as the dockworker rights did a few decades ago. Even though, as has been shown in several studies, technology doesn't kill jobs it just moves them to other, higher paying, industries. I was thinking more expensive for McDonald's as they would need one at every store, it could be significantly smaller though so it may have a scale advantage.



  • @coliver said:

    No arguments to the cost. This would have the same feeling as the dockworker rights did a few decades ago. Even though, as has been shown in several studies, technology doesn't kill jobs it just moves them to other, higher paying, industries.

    But does make them have to actually work. If your job is not to work but only to be a line item on the public's bill, well then there is nothing better than that.


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