Overheard/Underheard: MAID Oven Gets Home Cooks Out of the Kitchen Faster
Speech technology cannot only stand the heat, but it is also helping to create some in the kitchen. The MAID (Make All Incredible Dishes) oven, from Palo Alto, CA, start-up SectorCube, is jam-packed with smart features and functionality that could be very useful when your hands are covered with cookie dough.
In addition to working as both a convection and microwave oven, MAID is Web-enabled and uses existing home Wi-Fi networks to access a Recipe Store, where users can connect with world-class chefs and cooking enthusiasts to share recipes, discuss food, and explore new cuisines. It also comes loaded with a massive recipe database that allows users to simply tell the oven what's for dinner and the oven will automatically locate and set proper temperatures and cooking times.
MAID accepts voice, touch, and gesture commands and also comes with a six-inch touchscreen that can display recipes, video tutorials, and other information. Through integrated speech synthesis technologies, the stove can speak preparation and cooking instructions back to the user and prompt her to work out, take a walk, or go for a run, based on the calories in specific recipes.
MAID currently only supports U.S. English, but SectorCube is working on expanding to other languages.
The oven is adaptable as well. It "learns" the users' food preferences and cooking habits over time and can even make meal plans and diet suggestions based on eating habits, geographic locations, activity levels, calorie counts, or diets. It can count calories and enter them into a number of integrated fitness tracking apps.
The MAID oven can be accessed via an accompanying smartphone app that can send alerts when the food is done cooking.
Users still have to measure and mix all of the ingredients, but MAID basically does all of the rest.
How's that for hot technology?
Conference speakers bring light to technologies that are no longer science fiction.