Biometric vending machine


This Wall Street Journal video shows a Japanese vending machine that uses a camera to identify (guess?) your gender and age. Based on that data, and the weather, it recommends a particular drink to you. Interestingly, this report also presents banana vending machines as innovative. (Yeah, yeah, just look at it, etc.) But I've seen fruit vending machines around the US for years. "In Japan, Tomorrow’s Vending Machines Today" (via Submitterator, thanks CurseYouKhan!)

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  1. the “just look at it” banana meme is my favorite boingboing meme since unicorns, don’t speak of it like that.

  2. The vending machines I’ve seen in the US with fruit have been the all-purpose type with individual compartment doors, so they can sell pretty much anything that fits – fruit, sandwiches, whatever. This one looks purpose built for bananas. I wonder if you can select your specific banana so you get just the ripeness you want. THAT would be awesome.

  3. I think the fruit vending machines must be a regional thing. I’ve never even heard of a fruit vending machine before, let alone seen one. Here on the East Coast, we keep all our vending machines properly stocked with absolutely disgusting garbage. :p

  4. “Interestingly, this report also presents banana vending machines as innovative. (Yeah, yeah, just look at it, etc.)”

    I lol’d a bit.

    In Japan cigarette machine recognize if you’re underage and refuse your buy.

  5. This Wall Street Journal video shows a Japanese vending machine that uses a camera to identify (guess?) your gender and age. Based on that data, and the weather, it recommends a particular drink to you. However, no one knows quite why it does this because it invariably delivers a cupful of liquid that is almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea.

    1. D’oh! I didn’t see Candice’s comment before I posted. Beat me to it. (I’m having bizarre internet connection problems today; so each page is taking forever to load, and is freezing up on me before half the comments are displayed. I’m surprised I was able to post a comment at all.)

  6. …vending machine that uses a camera to identify (guess?) your gender and age. Based on that data, and the weather, it recommends a particular drink to you.

    However, no-one knows quite why it does this because it then invariably delivers a cupful of liquid that is almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea.

  7. I can’t help but wonder how stereotypical the gender/age based options will be:

    Teenage girl- Super cherry pink KAWAII Moe kitty milk!!!

    Adult male- Scotch on ice flavoured black coffee in a bottle shaped like huge tits.

    ;)

  8. “It would be very difficult to live without them?” Are you freaking kidding me? The human race is de-evolutionizing as we speak.

  9. GREAT!!

    Another machine from fantastical faraway Japan that has the innate ability to IGNORE BLACK PEOPLE!

    WOW!

    Just LOOK at it!
    (Cuz it ain’t gonna look at you, brother.)

  10. When they say “banana vending machines” do they mean a vending machine designed specifically for bananas, or one of those generic deals you see in cafeterias that have rotating compartments stocked with various things like apples and sandwiches?

  11. Seems the initial vending machine had cartoon eyes right before someone walked up to it. Some kind of attention grabber?

  12. Thing is, you can trick these machines by just holding a picture (ie from a magazine) in front of the camera.

    1. You probably could, but I can’t think of any reason to fool a vending machine into recommending a beverage that it thinks someone else might enjoy.

  13. i just learned an interesting fact about some other asian “i assume you are person X fitting product Y” thing. it was told on a forensic pathology talk in berlin today.
    it is about suicide with charcoal barbecue ovens in asia.
    apparently this suicide method has grown very popular and has risen to position number two after jumping from a height in hongkong.
    so how to fight this?

    if someone buys a bag of charcoal in the supermarket but nothing else related to barbecue (meat, sauce, drinks,….) the check out girl will be alarmed. she will then ask for your feeling today and will also help you out with a suicide help phoneline.

    i wonder whats next – offer a free condom with every purchase of wine/ chewing gum/ rose combination?

    1. And in the US you get red flagged if you buy fertilizer and diesel. Its interesting how different the uses of data mining are.

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