Technology

Let This “Server” Take Your Order

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tablet-545696_960_720Restaurants are using iPads to let customers get information about their food and place their order.

An iPad is a flat, square computer – like a large iPhone but instead of making phone calls it displays information and can access the Internet. It has a touch screen, so people can use their fingers to work it.

In Toronto, an Italian restaurant called 7 Numbers has iPads on each table instead of menus.

Chicago Cut is a steakhouse in the U.S. They have 40 iPads in their restaurant so people can see their wine list and order a bottle of wine. They can also get information on the wine to find out what it tastes like before they order it.

At John F. Kennedy airport in New York, people who are sitting at their gate waiting for a plane to leave can use iPads to order salads and sandwiches while they wait. A server brings the food and diners can either pay the server or pay over the iPad.

Celebrity Cruises has 75 iPads with their menus aboard their ships.

And sandwich restaurant Au Bon Pain has one iPad in every location. An employee comes around and takes customers’ orders for sandwiches using the iPad, and then sends the order to the kitchen with one click.

There are a couple of bad things about offering iPads in restaurants. For one thing, iPads run on batteries which need frequent recharging. iPads, which cost about $700 each, can also be stolen, although most have tracking software so they can be found if someone walks off with them. Lastly, some customers prefer a human server rather than a computer one.

However, some restaurants are finding that the benefits out weigh the negatives. Chicago Cut says that since they started offering the use of iPads, sales of their wine has increased about 20 per cent.

CURRICULUM CONNECTIONS

Writing/Discussion Prompt
As the article explained, some people may not like using an iPad in a restaurant because they prefer a human server rather than a computer one.  Similarly, many people argue that technology is replacing human interaction.  For example, instead of talking to a friend in person, we may chat on Facebook, over email or using text messages.
Do prefer talking to your friends using technology, or do you like to see your friends face-to-face?  Do you think technology changes how we communicate with people?  Why or why not?

Reading Prompt
Do you think that the use of iPads in restaurants is positive or negative?  Make a pro and con list using evidence from the article and your own ideas, then decide if you think it is mostly positive or mostly negative.

Primary
Express personal thoughts and feelings about what has been read (OME, Reading: 1.8)

Junior
Make judgements and draw conclusions about the ideas and information in texts and cite stated or implied evidence from the text to support their views (OME, Reading: 1.8)

Grammar Feature: Then vs. Than
People often confuse when to write ‘then’ or ‘than’ in a sentence.  This article uses both of these words:
1. An employee comes around and takes customers’ orders for sandwiches using the iPad, and then sends the order to the kitchen with one click.
2. Lastly, some customers prefer a human server rather than a computer one.

Can you tell the difference?  ‘Than’ is used when you compare two things.  ‘Then’ is used when you are talk about time.

Decide which word should go in the blank.
1. I walked to school and ____ I went to science class.
2. Hockey is a better sport ____ basketball.
3. Kyle is taller _____ Mohammed.
4. Sally walked her dog and ____ she played in the park.