The internet was perplexed by a recent viral video which showed a disturbingly robotic waitress serving customers at a hot pot restaurant. Her glazed over expression paired with her stiff movements made it hard to tell if she was woman or droid, with some people fully convinced she was not of flesh and blood.
While viewers were understandably confused, the video turned out to be an impressive impersonation, so as of right now we won't be getting realistic humanoid robo-servers just yet. (In other departments, AI is developing rapidly and our collection of AI productivity tools could even help streamline your workflow).
Robot waitress at a hot pot restaurant in Chongqing China 🤖 pic.twitter.com/rAEa8Y1zULNovember 22, 2023
It was confirmed by the South China Morning Post that the woman was indeed human, and is in fact the owner of the restaurant – using her smooth moves to entertain guests. You'll be glad to know that the woman (known as Qin) is also a professional street dancer, so her splendid talent is certainly not going to waste.
While it's definitely a little uncanny, there's no denying that Ms Qin has got some serious skills. Her talents were so convincing that it disturbed a number of X users, with one writing that they'd be "Too creeped out to tip," if Ms Qin was his waitress. Other's praised the performance, saying that "The acting skills are insane" and that they were almost fooled by the convincing charade.
Is she an android robot or is she a regular waitress pretending to be a robot🤔November 21, 2023
Too creeped out to tip fr…November 22, 2023
I think that Ms Qin's playful robot persona is a welcome break from the genuinely scary advancements in AI and robotics (I'm looking at you Sophia the Robot – you haunt my dreams). While there are already service robots dotted around, they're not quite so humanoid, so it's fun to imagine what a robotic future might look like without the existential dread.
That's not to say that I'm against AI technology as there's recently been some great advancements, like the robot created by an AI algorithm in just 26 seconds and Boston Dynamics' robot dog that now talks thanks to AI.