Project Gutenberg takes the home bar digital

Robot bartenders aren't new, but Pernod Ricard wants to take them out of the DIY realm with Project Gutenberg, a modular drink mixer-and-dispenser that comes with a companion iPhone or iPad. Named after the original printing press because of its resemblance to a row of books, Project Gutenberg will consist of up to six different types of liquor, with proportions dispensed courtesy of instructions on the smartphone or tablet app.

Unfortunately, the app can't actually control each of the containers. Instead each has a more traditional spout, triggered by pressing a glass to it. The software instead walks through the steps required to mix different cocktails, leaving the actual mixology to you.

Still, the recyclable box-bottles are smart in one way. They can report their fill-level to the app, and even be set up to automatically trigger reordering when they're getting toward empty, so you're never without your favorite tipple.

Pernod Ricard says it's a push to cater for "the conviviality of the future" – or at least its thirst – though warns that it's still very early days for an actual launch. Nonetheless, the potential for "dedicated products, services, personalized offers and experiences is infinite" the company boasts.

That might include pushing new recipes to the app depending on drinking habits, offering discounts on new flavors of spirits, or creating custom drinks menus themed around events or TV shows.