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Tech Culture: Planet CNET: Touch me to order
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Tech Culture: Planet CNET: Touch me to order

2:44 /

CNET UK's Rory Reid visits a London restaurant where the tabletops are interactive.

>> Maury: Hi I'm Maury Reed [assumed spelling] I'm at Intermol [assumed spelling] in London's [inaudible] Street where I hear there's something funny on the menu or is the menu on something funny? So what makes this place unique is the interactive touch-sensitive ordering system on each table, now above each one you'll find a projector which throws and image down onto the table and at the bottom right hand corner is a mouse track-pad. The track-pad controls a cursor which diners can use to cycle through the interactive menu, there's are the obvious options including food and drink but Intermol recommends you set the mood first. The ambiance menu lets you choose from dozens of images and patterns with which to customize your virtual tablecloth. If you and your date can't agree on the theme then how about the extra's menu here you can blow each other up in two-player games, argue about which local bars or clubs to visit or order a taxi all at the click of a finger. If things are going well and you decide to stick around then it's only polite to order some food, again, this is done through the interactive menu system which lets you browse images of the starters, main dishes, side orders, plus wines and cocktails. Once you've chosen something, for example a sashimi salad then you can do something that many restaurants really wouldn't approve of, back in the extra's menu you can actually view a live webcam of what's going on in the kitchen. Speaking of which isn't an interactive menu system doing humans out of a job, Intermol co-owner Noel Hanwick [assumed spelling] says no. >> Noel: Well when we first came up with the concept my business partner and I were out at a restaurant trying to get another drink and we just thought wouldn't it be great if we could just reach down [inaudible] another beer at a rave. And what we really tried to take was a very functional system and then add lots of theater and charm to it without removing the human element to the waiters. So the waiter still brings your food, the nice bits and they'll also remove the plates and if it's your birthday they'll still sing Happy Birthday to you, so the whole thing has nice elements to it without the parts, the bits which sometimes are a bit more frustrating. I think what we feel is that sometimes smooze the social interaction that actually gives the talking point a natural fact when you're in here on average nights it's a really buzzy atmosphere it's not so kind of a sound and computer room it's really a buzzing lively atmosphere it's wonderful. But what we try to do is make the system pretty streamlined so we don't have a kind of an excessive options so a natural fact you can always if there's something really detailed you want you can always revert to the standard call of waiters [inaudible] and the waiter will come straight to you for complicated requests. >> Maury: So there you have it that's Intermol in [inaudible] Street where tomorrow's dining is happening today. ^M00:02:36 [ Music ]

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