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Coffee shop uses AI to track the productivity and work of baristas, sparking debate

A post of a coffee shop utilizing AI to monitor their baristas' productivity and customer satisfaction divides the internet.

Coffee shop uses AI to track the productivity and work of baristas, sparking debate
Cover Image Source: YouTube | NeuroSpot

Artificial intelligence has come a long way from being something that you check the weather to with. Nowadays, most domains of human existence have some kind of AI being employed to make the job easier or perform some kind of surveillance. While the technology has been mostly positively received by people, there are some use cases where we must learn to draw the line. @Mr_AllenT reposted a video clip on X of an AI being used in a coffee shop controversially. The original video has been posted by the company on YouTube.

Representative Image Source: Pexels | Hatice Baran
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Hatice Baran


The shop installed a video analytics tool to give them real-world updates about their employees and customers. The company that gives off this tech, NeuroSpot, calls it a Neuro Bionic Video Recorder. It essentially provides detailed analytics of workers and customers within a business. For instance, in the shared video, we see how many cups each barista has served. Along with that, we can also see for how long each customer has been sitting at their table.


Barista movements are also tracked by small colored lines. @Mr_AllenT also revealed how it could study the behavior of visitors and their satisfaction levels with the service. The user described the whole thing to be quite "freaky." People on the platform were appalled to see AI being used in such an invasive manner. @HBCoop_ inquired, "Yeah, that's not cool at all. What is the reason they give for this?" @Mr_AllenT clarified, "Definitely not cool. From what I can gather from their YouTube, it looks like their tech is mainly geared towards security and tracking potential theft."



Another individual, @Davnic3, seemed to think: "Security is a cover. This is to ensure customers don't overstay their welcome and see that employees are fulfilling the terms of their slavery." Whether the software helps with business is debatable. The bigger problem with such tech is how dehumanizing it can be for employees.

Representtaive Cover Image Source: Pexels | Hatice Baran, Reddit | u/Upbeat_Cut7613
Image Source: Pexels | Matheus Bertelli

A few months back, u/Upbeat_Cut7613, who happened to be a student, shared how they had been wrongfully accused of using AI to write their essays. They start by stating how they had a teacher who would repeatedly fail them because he thought that they were using software like ChatGPT to finish their assignments. The student tried to reason with him by offering solutions. They write, "I offered to use Google Docs and show the professor my revision history. I had even offered to write all of my essays at his office at a time convenient to him, but this all fell on deaf ears."

Things got worse when they got suspended for a whole semester and had to take the same professor's class again. They decided to request the dean to be placed in another professor's class. However, the dean denied the request and threatened them with expulsion from the school for scapegoating. They realized they had no choice but to go through the difficult professor's class again and find a way to pass.

The student decided to tackle the situation tactfully and made use of ChatGPT to solve their problems. They would write the essays on their own and put in a prompt in ChatGPT saying, "Hi ChatGPT, Can you please write this 1000-word essay using the grammar and vocabulary of a high school freshman: '(Insert My Essay Here)'? Please include all points and paragraphs." This worked wonderfully as the teacher did not suspect anything, showcasing how he was making his claims from his intuition rather than any actual evidence.

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