Robotic Taster Can ID Authentic Thai Food


Good Thai food is great, but bad Thai food can be terrible. Hence the need for a robotic food taster. What? You don’t have one?

Then you haven’t heard about the “e-Delicious machine,” a food-tasting robot that its designers say can distinguish between authentic Thai food and inferior knockoffs.

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The machine was developed by the government-funded Thai Delicious Committee (we are not making this up, by the way) at the suggestion of a former prime minister who had it up to here with eating bad Thai food on diplomatic missions. The taster ‘bot uses sensors and microchips to scan food samples for specific chemical signatures. It can tell the difference between real Thai ingredients — authentic curry paste, finger root and pandan leaves, for example — and lame imitations often used by Western eateries.

The Thai Delicious Committee, as quoted by The New York Times, describes the e-Delicious machine as “an intelligent robot that measures smell and taste in food ingredients through sensor technology in order to measure taste like a food critic.”

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The research team has developed a standard protocol against which the chemical signatures of particular food samples are measured. The e-Delicious machine can spot those fakes and send up a flag as red as a Thai chili pepper, according to the designers.

The robotic taster was unveiled at a gala dinner in Bangkok earlier this week, where diplomats were invited to witness the technology at work. This can’t be construed as anything but good news. When everyone has access to good Thai food, surely the world will be a happier and more peaceful place.

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