Wait, a Robot Made this Omelette?

June 09, 2020

Nothing beats a home-cooked meal, but what if you could enjoy said meal made by a robot? Scientists are training robots to make this a reality.

The team of engineers from the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom, are creating a machine that will cook food. However, the success of this endeavour raises a unique point of discussion.

The engineers started off with a meal with simple ingredients and made across the world, so they settled on the humble omelette.

Dr Fumiya Iida, lead researcher of the project, said in a statement: “Cooking is a really interesting problem for roboticists. As humans can never be totally objective when it comes to food, so how do we as scientists assess whether the robot has done a good job?”

Cooking is a science in itself: there is a challenge in precise measurements, cracking, whisking and crafting an omelette. However, there is no way to accommodate for the complexity of personal taste.

Dr Iida commented that the “subjectivity of human sense of taste” meant they had to alter the machine’s learning algorithm.

The end result? The omelettes tasted “better than expected”, which opens up a new field of understanding how robots can be applied to personalised nutrition and dieting.