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What might the supermarket of the future look like?

What might the supermarket of the future look like?

As soon as you enter, you notice that this “supermarket” is not an ordinary store: here you can find Hoover's own brand flour, Bella organic eggs and Technicum black tea. It's not just the product range that's unusual: it's on a single product Shopping project A tablet is included. He asks which face he wants to erase.

In the supermarket laboratory

this “Point of saleThe shop in question is an experimental hands-on laboratory. You can't actually shop here: the furniture is what they want Technical Center of the University of Applied Sciences Vienna Inspiring young people about software development. Your “supermarket” should show what can be done with everyday devices like cell phones and tablets if you have good ideas.

“It was important for us to only work with technologies that our visitors are already familiar with,” explains the project manager. Luke Eichbauer Future area. It is often difficult for ordinary people to understand the capabilities of software. “With the supermarket, we wanted to create a space where those interested could explore and experience the field of computer science,” he explains.

Quick shopping path

The shopping cart tablet app comes with Computer server Connected. There is a program running that creates a face with Database Compares them and assigns them to appropriate clients. The image is captured for the database during registration.

Then it starts: a menu listing all available products. If one is selected, the application will fade to one 3D map The path to the product. If a customer selects multiple items, the fastest path to find everything is calculated. To do this, Eichbauer and his colleagues created a 3D spatial model using regular iPhones. “When navigating through the supermarket, the camera on the shopping cart tablet compares the image with this stored 3D model,” he explains. “This means it can locate itself and is independent of external sensors.”

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After you take a product from the shelf – for example, a box of the specially created “Teachnikum” tea – it is placed in front of the tablet and photographed. One Object detection Determines which product it is and adds it invoice He added. It is practical to display important information for each product, such as how many calories it contains and whether it bears the “animal welfare” or “organic” seal. You can also learn why peppers are healthy. After paying directly on the tablet, the invoice is sent to the email address provided – you won't need cash at this supermarket. Everything works purely via tablet or cell phone.

FH Technikum has also developed its own tea for its 'point of sale' supermarket. It is called 'Teachnikum' and is available as green and black tea.

Inventory is recorded automatically at any time

Store inventory is calculated automatically. If a product is purchased, it disappears automatically Of stock. “Each has a specific location indicated on the model. “This means I know where the products are at all times,” explains Eichbauer.

Many POS visitors may respond with skepticism Face recognition reaction, says Eichbauer. However, the data is properly treated seriously. One of the goals of the Supermarket Lab is also to raise awareness of the potential dangers of high-tech environments. “In our project, the data is deleted after each use and is never stored with external service providers,” emphasizes Eichbauer. Just that picture Remain in database for future visits.

Technology for others

The supermarket is constantly being developed and students can try out their ideas here and change the space. But developments don't have to stay just in the lab. Eichbauer would like to see them later in real supermarkets, For storage or Museums Uses.

So far, the supermarket has been alone Technologies It has been implemented and is already integrated into mobile phones and tablets. In the future, the “point of sale” could be more sophisticated Sensor technology Joined. The key word here is “augmented reality.” With the help of special glasses, virtual objects are displayed in the environment. “We could develop something where you could walk into a supermarket with camera glasses and all the products that don't contain peanuts are displayed in green. That might help people with allergies,” says Eichbauer. However, the supermarket project will continue for some time.

Computer scientist Lukas Eichbauer is responsible for the project.

Computer scientist Lukas Eichbauer is responsible for the project.