Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Fast Food Soundboard

No more *kshchicanitakeyourorder*
  [vote for,

Drive-through fast food communication systems are of notoriously poor quality. Vocal enthusiasm among employees is similarly low. Both problems can be solved with a computerized soundboard in lieu of a monotone chant.

When a customer pulls up, they are greeted with a cheery recorded "Hi! Welcome to out restaurant! What would you like to eat today?". As they place their order, the employee presses the corresponding buttons as usual. Once complete, the computer reads back the order clearly, along with the price.

Also on the soundboard are the answers to common questions, such as specials or hours. Of course, a microphone will still be available for yelling at pranksters and such.

All the voices are professionally recorded, and compiled to sound natural. A restaurant chain could employ a dozen or so voice actors for different regional dialects. Employees could even record their own voice during training, eliminating the discrepancy when regular communication is required.

Aq_Bi, Sep 05 2010


       But a human is still needed to record the order. Speech recognition software is still far too lousy to rely on. I suppose they could outsource the listening to India...
Aq_Bi, Sep 05 2010

       [+] pretty obvious really... too obvious perhaps...
FlyingToaster, Sep 05 2010

       My local McDonalds has a looping "greeting" message that plays when nobody is talking. The actual ordering process is handled by an employee. This seems like a happy medium.
Spacecoyote, Sep 05 2010

       Makes sense but suggests an automated checkout, which in turn suggests no job for the employee concerned, or at least fewer jobs, and the trouble with that is you then get to wondering what the point of employing anyone is. Why don't we just all go on the dole, remove the stigma and have robots run everything? I've been wondering about this ever since i was small.
nineteenthly, Sep 05 2010

       //Speech recognition software is still far too lousy to rely on//   

       So why not move the order point input screen out to the customer side? No need for the order taker at all.   

       > Drive up to the order point > Touch lots of buttons to place your order > Swipe your credit or debit card to make payment > Drive on to the pick-up point > Collect your almost complete order > Complain about missing items
Tulaine, Sep 05 2010

       //So why not move the order point input screen out to the customer side?//   

       Apparently you've never seen my grandmother try to use a self checkout register. You'll have cars backed up around the block.
Aq_Bi, Sep 05 2010

       This whole concept distresses me.
MaxwellBuchanan, Sep 05 2010

       [Aq_Bi] Grampa's inability to cope with the telephone was a problem, once, too. Time, and mortality, tend to solve such problems. But I hope your grandmother continues holding up the checkout line for many happy, healthy years to come.
mouseposture, Sep 06 2010


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