Tasteful Robot

Anybody remember that art installation that replicated the entire digestive system, complete with, ahem, authentic output?  Well, should you decide you need to add one to your collection, but are entirely at a loss what menu you should feed it on, NEC might just have the robot answer to your prayers.

A joint project with Mie University, the two foot tall prototype is capable of recognising dozens of wines, cheeses and hors d'oeuvre using, amongst other things, an arm-mounted infrared spectrometer (sure to be the must-have on the Autumn/Winter catwalks).  After a moments cogitation he identifies it, gives his judgement on taste and quality, and even recommends suitable foods to go along with it (using knowledge of his owners' health to caution against fatty and salty foods as appropriate).  We don't yet know whether he's programmed with a range of foul expletives to berate people who buy crappy vintages.

Obviously this is just a proof-of-concept right now, but NEC say they'd aim for a $1000 pricetag if a commercial version was to be produced.  Far more likely is interest in the tasting sensor, which could go on sale as early as next year

RedOrbit [via BornRich]