Carl’s Jr CEO toys with idea of more automated restaurants


Carl’s Jr may no longer be staffed by humans in the not-too-distant future. (AP)

Looks like the little guy can teach a global fast food conglomerate a thing or two about running a restaurant

Eatsa, the mostly automated healthy, fast food bowl shop based in San Francisco, has inspired the CEO of Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s to rethink the traditional workforce with the idea of adding more automation to its restaurants.

“I want to try it,” CEO Andy Puzder told Business Insider. “We could have a restaurant that’s focused on all-natural products and is much like an Eatsa, where you order on a kiosk, you pay with a credit or debit card, your order pops up, and you never see a person.”

While the CEO didn’t say he’d replace all workers with robots, an employee-free dining room and ordering system could help the fast food giant cope with rising minimum wages across the country.  Even at Eatsa, live workers are needed behind the scenes to assemble bowls. 

“With government driving up the cost of labor, it’s driving down the number of jobs,” he says, predicting the automation trend will likely extend beyond the restaurant industry.  “You’re going to see automation not just in airports and grocery stores, but in restaurants.”

The outspoken critic of raising the minimum wage has said it could lead to reduced employment opportunities across the board and stagnated growth for his industry.

If the minimum wage is raised, argues Puzder, more companies like CKE foods which owns Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr will look to automate faster– which could further decimate jobs.  

“If you’re making labor more expensive, and automation less expensive — this is not rocket science,” says Puzder.

The CEO acknowledges that it may be some time before Carl’s Jr’s dining room is people-free, and the chain would have to start small and test a more automated food system first before a larger roll-out. 

But Puzder says he sees automation fulfilling “rote tasks like grilling a burger or taking an order”–areas in which a robot would probably be more precise than a human.

And while older customers may take some time to adapt to interacting with a faceless platform, Puzder says the coveted millennial market actually prefers as little social interaction as possible when it comes to ordering food.

“Millennials like not seeing people,” said the CEO. “I’ve been inside restaurants where we’ve installed ordering kiosks … and I’ve actually seen young people waiting in line to use the kiosk where there’s a person standing behind the counter, waiting on nobody.”

CES 2015: Robots Take Over Las Vegas

What happens when a bunch of robots go to Las Vegas?

It’s not the plot of a science fiction movie but is instead a reality this week at the 2015 International Consumer Electronics Show, where some of the most innovative artificially intelligent machines are stealing the show.

Robots may not rule the world yet, but they can dominate in a game of beer pong, as evidenced by a group seen at Empire Robotics’ booth.

A robot tosses a pingpong ball in a round of beer pong at CES 2015.

Intel showed its spider dress, which has a built-in self-defense system. The dress was designed by Anouk Wipprecht and uses Intel’s Edison chip.

When someone gets too close to the wearer’s personal space, sensors in the dress alert its spider-like limbs to expand, putting space between the wearer and perceived threat.

The Bocco Kids’ Robot sits on a table at CES 2015 on Jan. 6, 2015.

Designed by a Japanese company, Bocco is a friendly robot that aims to bring families closer together.

Bocco lets users send a voice message to loved ones at home, which will be delivered by the robot. They can then talk back and the robot will send a voice message reply.

Another feature: Attach a sensor and it can notify someone outside the home when a loved one is home, perfect for working parents whose children go home alone after school.

Grill-cleaning robots were just one type of robot to be displayed at CES 2015.

While having the perfect barbecue may be some peoples’ idea of heaven, the resulting cleanup process is not. That’s where the Grillbot steps in to help.

The robotic cleaners spring into action with the push of a button, using high-powered motors and wire brushes to clean up grill residue in a matter of minutes.

ABC News’ Neal Karlinsky talks to a woman who telecommutes out of state via this remote-controlled robot on wheels at CES 2015 on Jan. 7, 2015.

While some people may enjoy working in another office or even state than their boss, the BeamPro robot allows anyone to be virtually present in an office.

Made by Suitable Tech, the robot lets users “interact with remote locations by coupling high-end video and audio with the freedom of motion to move about a space.”

The result: A more collaborative work experience and the joy of knowing that your boss is watching you, even from across the country.

ABC News’ Neal Karlinsky and Brandon Chase contributed to this report.

Europe’s robots to become ‘electronic persons’ under draft plan | Reuters

By Georgina Prodhan

| MUNICH, Germany

MUNICH, Germany Europe’s growing army of robot workers could be classed as “electronic persons” and their owners liable to paying social security for them if the European Union adopts a draft plan to address the realities of a new industrial revolution.

Robots are being deployed in ever-greater numbers in factories and also taking on tasks such as personal care or surgery, raising fears over unemployment, wealth inequality and alienation.

Their growing intelligence, pervasiveness and autonomy requires rethinking everything from taxation to legal liability, a draft European Parliament motion, dated May 31, suggests.

Some robots are even taking on a human form. Visitors to the world’s biggest travel show in March were greeted by a lifelike robot developed by Japan’s Toshiba (6502.T) and were helped by another made by France’s Aldebaran Robotics.

However, Germany’s VDMA, which represents companies such as automation giant Siemens (SIEGn.DE) and robot maker Kuka (KU2G.DE), says the proposals are too complicated and too early.

German robotics and automation turnover rose 7 percent to 12.2 billion euros ($13.8 billion) last year and the country is keen to keep its edge in the latest industrial technology. Kuka is the target of a takeover bid by China’s Midea (000333.SZ).

The draft motion called on the European Commission to consider “that at least the most sophisticated autonomous robots could be established as having the status of electronic persons with specific rights and obligations”.

It also suggested the creation of a register for smart autonomous robots, which would link each one to funds established to cover its legal liabilities.

Patrick Schwarzkopf, managing director of the VDMA’s robotic and automation department, said: “That we would create a legal framework with electronic persons – that’s something that could happen in 50 years but not in 10 years.”

“We think it would be very bureaucratic and would stunt the development of robotics,” he told reporters at the Automatica robotics trade fair in Munich, while acknowledging that a legal framework for self-driving cars would be needed soon.

The report added that robotics and artificial intelligence may result in a large part of the work now done by humans being taken over by robots, raising concerns about the future of employment and the viability of social security systems.

The draft motion, drawn up by the European parliament’s committee on legal affairs also said organizations should have to declare savings they made in social security contributions by using robotics instead of people, for tax purposes.

Schwarzkopf said there was no proven correlation between increasing robot density and unemployment, pointing out that the number of employees in the German automotive industry rose by 13 percent between 2010 and 2015, while industrial robot stock in the industry rose 17 percent in the same period.

The motion faces an uphill battle to win backing from the various political blocks in European Parliament. Even if it did get enough support to pass, it would be a non-binding resolution as the Parliament lacks the authority to propose legislation.

(Additional reporting by Alissa de Carbonnel in Brussels; Editing by Alexander Smith)

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Industrials Sector |

BERLIN, Dec 13 A sixth new Airbus A400M

military transporter plane is due to land in Germany on

Wednesday, with another likely to follow before the year’s end,

but Airbus faces penalties for the late deliveries, the German

defence ministry said on Tuesday.

Dec 13 Boeing Co said on Tuesday it would

move the headquarters of its defense unit to Washington, D.C.

from St. Louis.

* Vivendi says has 12.3 pct of Mediaset, aims for up to 20


DUBAI, Dec 13 Out-of-favour corporate jet

ownership is fuelling growing demand for flights offered by

business aircraft operator VistaJet, the founder and chairman of

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Revolução Industrial – História, antecedentes, causas, resumo, máquinas


A Revolução Industrial teve início no século XVIII, na Inglaterra, com a mecanização dos sistemas de produção. Enquanto na Idade Média o artesanato era a forma de produzir mais utilizada, na Idade Moderna tudo mudou. A burguesia industrial, ávida por maiores lucros, menores custos e produção acelerada, buscou alternativas para melhorar a produção de mercadorias. Também podemos apontar o crescimento populacional, que trouxe maior demanda de produtos e mercadorias.

Pioneirismo Inglês 

Foi a Inglaterra o país que saiu na frente no processo de Revolução Industrial do século XVIII. Este fato pode ser explicado por diversos fatores. A Inglaterra possuía grandes reservas de carvão mineral em seu subsolo, ou seja, a principal fonte de energia para movimentar as máquinas e as locomotivas à vapor.

Além da fonte de energia, os ingleses possuíam grandes reservas de minério de ferro, a principal matéria-prima utilizada neste período. A mão-de-obra disponível em abundância (desde a Lei dos Cercamentos de Terras ), também favoreceu a Inglaterra, pois havia uma massa de trabalhadores procurando emprego nas cidades inglesas do século XVIII. A burguesia inglesa tinha capital suficiente para financiar as fábricas, comprar matéria-prima e máquinas e contratar empregados. O mercado consumidor inglês também pode ser destacado como importante fator que contribuiu para o pioneirismo inglês.

Avanços da Tecnologia 

O século XVIII foi marcado pelo grande salto tecnológico nos transportes e máquinas. As máquinas a vapor, principalmente os gigantes teares, revolucionou o modo de produzir. Se por um lado a máquina substituiu o homem, gerando milhares de desempregados, por outro baixou o preço de mercadorias e acelerou o ritmo de produção.




Locomotiva: importante avanço nos meios de transporte

Na área de transportes, podemos destacar a invenção das locomotivas a vapor (maria fumaça) e os trens a vapor. Com estes meios de transportes, foi possível transportar mais mercadorias e pessoas, num tempo mais curto e com custos mais baixos. 

Principais invenções técnicas da Revolução Industrial: lançadeira volante de John Kay, tear mecânico de Cartwright, máquina a vapor de JamesWatt e locomotiva de Stephenson.


A Fábrica

As fábricas do início da Revolução Industrial não apresentavam o melhor dos ambientes de trabalho. As condições das fábricas eram precárias. Eram ambientes com péssima iluminação, abafados e sujos. Os salários recebidos pelos trabalhadores eram muito baixos e chegava-se a empregar o trabalho infantil e feminino. Os empregados chegavam a trabalhar até 18 horas por dia e estavam sujeitos a castigos físicos dos patrões. Não havia direitos trabalhistas como, por exemplo, férias, décimo terceiro salário, auxílio doença, descanso semanal remunerado ou qualquer outro benefício. Quando desempregados, ficavam sem nenhum tipo de auxílio e passavam por situações de precariedade.


Reação dos trabalhadores 

Em muitas regiões da Europa, os trabalhadores se organizaram para lutar por melhores condições de trabalho. Os empregados das fábricas formaram as trade unions (espécie de sindicatos) com o objetivo de melhorar as condições de trabalho dos empregados. Houve também movimentos mais violentos como, por exemplo, o ludismo. Também conhecidos como “quebradores de máquinas”, os ludistas invadiam fábricas e destruíam seus equipamentos numa forma de protesto e revolta com relação a vida dos empregados. O cartismo foi mais brando na forma de atuação, pois optou pela via política, conquistando diversos direitos políticos para os trabalhadores.



A Revolução tornou os métodos de produção mais eficientes. Os produtos passaram a ser produzidos mais rapidamente, barateando o preço e estimulando o consumo. Por outro lado, aumentou também o número de desempregados. As máquinas foram substituindo, aos poucos, a mão-de-obra humana. A poluição ambiental, o aumento da poluição sonora, o êxodo rural e o crescimento desordenado das cidades também foram conseqüências nocivas para a sociedade. 

Até os dias de hoje, o desemprego é um dos grandes problemas nos países em desenvolvimento. Gerar empregos tem se tornado um dos maiores desafios de governos no mundo todo. Os empregos repetitivos e pouco qualificados foram substituídos por máquinas e robôs. As empresas procuram profissionais bem qualificados para ocuparem empregos que exigem cada vez mais criatividade e múltiplas capacidades. Mesmo nos países desenvolvidos tem faltado empregos para a população.

Premarket Stock Trading – CNNMoney

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California’s Drought Plan Mostly Lays Off Agriculture, Oil Industries

When California Gov. Jerry Brown ordered mandatory water conservation measures for the first time in state history last week, agriculture, the state’s biggest water user, was largely exempted from the new rules, an omission that quickly drew criticism even among fans of the measure.

“It is striking that his executive order refines restrictions to the urban sector that consumes only 20 percent of California’s water and leaves the agricultural sector, which consumes 80 percent of the water, untouched at least for the moment,” said Mark Hertsgaard, an environmental journalist and author who lives in San Francisco. “You can’t leave 80 percent of the problem off the table.”

The majority of the governor’s mandates targeted urban water use, which Brown hopes can be reduced by 25 percent of 2013 levels. The measures include replacing 50 million square feet of lawns throughout the state with drought-tolerant landscaping and requiring large landscapes such as campuses, golf courses and cemeteries to make significant cuts in water use.

Regarding agriculture, Brown’s executive order mandated that irrigation districts develop drought management plans and directed the State Water Resources Control Board to step up efforts to curtail wasteful water practices in agricultural fields. The state also passed its first groundwater law last year, aimed at limiting the amount of groundwater farmers can drill for. But critics argue the law doesn’t call for sustainability until the 2040s, and scientists aren’t sure if ground water supplies can last that long.

“The order does not deal with the fact that farmers are accelerating the planting of water-intensive crops, primarily for export, at the same time residents are being required to reduce their water by 25 percent,” said Jonas Minton, a water policy adviser for the Planning and Conservation League and a former state water official.

Minton argued the order should have included restrictions on planting water-intensive crops and more regulations for groundwater drilling.

“People are willing to sacrifice when they believe it is a shared sacrifice,” Minton said.

California Agriculture Too Big to Fail?

A farmer tends to his sheep in Wasco, Calif. on July 2, 2014.

California’s agricultural industry is the largest in the country, receiving $46.4 billion for its output in 2013, according to the California Department of Food and Agriculture. Although the industry consumes 80 percent of the state’s water supply, it accounts for only 2 percent of the state economy, according to the Public Policy Institute of California. California agriculture is also responsible for 69 percent of the nation’s commercially available fruits and nuts, according to the California Department of Food and Agriculture.

“They’re providing most of the fruits and vegetables of America to significant parts of the world,” Brown told George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday, where he defended the measures.

A crew of workers weeds a tomato field in Huron, Calif. on July 1, 2014.

The Golden State’s agricultural industry has suffered dramatically under the drought, which cost the industry $1.5 billion in 2014, according to a University of California Davis study. Last year alone, farmers idled more than 400,000 acres of farmland amid abnormally dry conditions, the study added. Farmers primarily rely on the state’s snowpack to irrigate their crops, and it has been reduced to just 8 percent of its historic average.

Danny Merkley, the director of water resources at the California Farm Bureau Federation, argued that California farmers have done more to address water conservation than the government, pointing to a 43 percent increase in crop production per acre-foot of water over the last 40 years and the billions of dollars the industry spent on more efficient irrigation systems.

Beau BJ Diedrich starts up his pump to get water to his almond orchards in Cantua Creek, Calif. on July 1, 2014.

While many farmers are pursuing less-water-intensive irrigation practices, such as drip irrigation, more than 40 percent of the state’s irrigated acreage uses flood irrigation, a technique widely criticized for its inefficiency.

Another element critics felt was missing from the governor’s executive order was addressing the water pricing system in California. Critics argue the price of water should be raised to reflect the drought situation.

The Fracking Factor

Pump jacks are seen at dawn in an oil field over the Monterey Shale formation where gas and oil extraction using hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is on the verge of a boom on March 24, 2014 near Lost Hills, Calif.

In addition to agriculture, many environmentalists have called on the governor to include the oil industry in the new water use restrictions. Hydraulic fracturing, a process that involves injecting large amounts of water and chemicals into the ground and that critics argue can result in contaminated ground water, is widespread in California, with 84,000 wells spread out across the state as of 2014.

Proponents of hydraulic fracturing can point to the $24 billion in tax revenue the industry is expected to bring the state over the next year, according to a UC Davis study, and to the relatively low amounts of water the California wells are forced to use, for geological reasons, in comparison to other states, according to the National Resources Defense Council, an environmental advocacy group.

However, in February, a report released by state regulators found that thousands of hydraulic fracturing wells were in violation of the Safe Drinking Water Act by illegally injecting toxic fluids into protected aquifers, prompting the governor to shut down 12 wells in the Central Valley that the state said were leaking carcinogens at a rate 700 times higher than federal standards allow.

“It was shocking, especially in the midst of our drought,” said Adam Scow, California director of Food and Water Watch. “The groundwater is our savings account for water in California and not only were we over-drafting it, but polluting it with toxic chemicals.”

Tupper Hull, spokesman for the Western States Petroleum Association, said nobody’s groundwater is being contaminated, adding that the question of whether or not contaminants are being disposed of in protected California aquifers turns on a discrepancy between the state and EPA definitions of aquifers appropriate for disposal wells.

“The state did not evolve its permitting to keep pace with the evolution of oil production activities,” he said. “Now, we’re at the end of the [process of the] state and the EPA working through the deficiencies to come up with a plan to correct it.”

Two days before announcing his executive order, Brown rejected a legal petition of more than 100,000 signatures to place a statewide moratorium on hydraulic fracturing.

“He’s been a world-class leader on climate change, but he has not banned fracking,” Hertsgaard said of Brown. “My daughter and the other kids are going to need that groundwater.”

Industrials Sector |

GURUGRAM, India, Dec 12 Hundreds of thousands of

Indian construction workers have returned home since Prime

Minister Narendra Modi abolished high-denomination banknotes,

leaving some building sites across the country facing costly


CAIRO, Dec 11 A bombing at Cairo’s largest

Coptic cathedral killed at least 25 people and wounded 49, many

of them women and children attending Sunday mass, in the

deadliest attack on Egypt’s Christian minority in years.

MILAN, Dec 11 Italy’s biggest bank by assets

UniCredit has reached a deal to sell its asset manager

Pioneer to France’s Amundi for more than 4 billion euros ($4.2

billion), a source with knowledge of the matter said on Sunday.

ROME, Dec 11 Rescuers plucked 1,164 people from

rubber and wooden boats in the Mediterranean under heavy

thunderstorms on Sunday and recovered six dead bodies during the

operations, relief services said.

2:54pm EST