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Too many screens!!!!
Old 12-09-2015, 06:41 PM   #1
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Too many screens!!!!

Last night DW and I treated ourselves to a nice night out as our Christmas gift to ourselves before all the travel to see kids. Went to local Flemings, pretty much on order of Ruth Chris if you're not familiar.

So we sit down in this very nice high end restaurant and have a super waiter. We decided we'd go with some good beers (we're rarely wine drinkers). Instead of a listing of the many beers they had, he whips out tablet and sets it up so we can scroll through, have pop ups of descriptions of flavors, etc. Did the same thing when it was dessert time with the dessert menu. It just really struck me as out of place at a high end steak house. When I gave the beer tablet the stink eye he jumped right in and asked our preferences and provided an excellent choice, so the service was really quite excellent.

Have been to several of the casual places where the tablet is right there as a permanent fixture allowing you to order and pay right there. May be convenient, but then what's the waiter for? All someone needs to do is bring the food out. I guess the experience at the nice restaurant was too reminiscent of the Applebees/Chili's experience. When I'm plunking big dollars down for a rare treat (we did have a nice coupon though) I just don't want technology put in my face. I know, I'm an old guy. Just curious if anyone else shares my disdain for this latest intrusion of tech into life?
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Old 12-09-2015, 06:44 PM   #2
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In short, yes. Along with wanting a QUIET place to go eat.
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Old 12-09-2015, 06:49 PM   #3
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I'm waiting for a restaurant to generate your meal right on the table top with a 3D printer.
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Old 12-09-2015, 07:02 PM   #4
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I would put my finger in butter and try to scroll the lists.

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Old 12-09-2015, 10:03 PM   #5
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I'm waiting for a restaurant to generate your meal right on the table top with a 3D printer.
They are working on it.

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Old 12-09-2015, 11:14 PM   #6
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Got to love new tech, it will only make our lives better!

Wait a minute - I still have a flip phone and don't know how to send a text
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Old 12-09-2015, 11:33 PM   #7
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In short, yes. Along with wanting a QUIET place to go eat.
I notice restaurants are getting quieter, with all the folks sitting across from each other texting.
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Old 12-09-2015, 11:57 PM   #8
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Have been to several of the casual places where the tablet is right there as a permanent fixture allowing you to order and pay right there. May be convenient, but then what's the waiter for? All someone needs to do is bring the food out. I guess the experience at the nice restaurant was too reminiscent of the Applebees/Chili's experience. When I'm plunking big dollars down for a rare treat (we did have a nice coupon though) I just don't want technology put in my face. I know, I'm an old guy. Just curious if anyone else shares my disdain for this latest intrusion of tech into life?
Actually given the stories of credit card skimming when you give your card to the waiter the screen is an improvement. I say either have folks pay at the cashier (where the card is never out of your sight) or at the table with the tablet where the same is true.

Note that actually at Chillis there are menus on the tablets for deserts and drinks also.
If the place has a large and varying selection of beers the tablet makes sense relative to having to reprint a menu often as the selection varies.
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Old 12-10-2015, 04:59 AM   #9
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Flemings isn't really "high end". It's expensive, and it serves steak, and it has some faux high end embellishments, but a real "high end" restaurant, around here, would cost at least 25% more.

And it wouldn't have a "wine bar".

And it wouldn't offer coupons.

Flemings is a place my spouse and I would go for crab legs on our anniversary - and we'd never be caught dead in a real "high end" restaurant.

A real "high end" restaurant, incidentally, would have far fewer choices - one of the things you're buying at a "high end" restaurant is the restaurateur's and chef's professional discretion. So yes, the server would be able to rattle off details of the various beverage choices they have available, but that's because you'd probably have six or seven beer choices to choose from instead of twenty. And you'd be tipping a sommelier and ordering by the bottle, instead of having (literally) a hundred wine-by-the-glass choices.

In terms of technology, at a chain restaurant like Flemings it could be a great advantage. Since the restaurant offers so many choices, the tablet provides a much more comfortable way of perusing the choices than sitting there with the waiter standing there and going through each of the choices, listing all the ice cream flavors, etc. This is especially true of patrons with hearing impairments, or even just dulled memory due to the normal stresses of a day at the office - it is often far superior to see the choices and have control over going back and forth between the choices, instead of having to listen to them recited in a linear fashion.
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Old 12-10-2015, 07:59 AM   #10
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I can see where this is devolving to. My pet peeve is the waiter who at the end of the meal produces the check portfolio out of the small of his back where it had been snugly tucked under his waistband and far too close to his butt cheeks.

Ew! Imagine them doing that now with the beverage tablet?! No thanks I'll just have water.
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Old 12-10-2015, 08:27 AM   #11
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I notice restaurants are getting quieter, with all the folks sitting across from each other texting.
Now if they would only turn up the lights so my old eyes can read the menu. Recently went to an Outback Steakhouse and had to use my cell phone as a flashlight to read the menu!

Regarding the tablets for selection.....if it means they can get rid of the multiple drink/dessert/promo menus that clutter the table when you first sit down, I'm all for it. First thing I do when sit down is collect all the clutter and move it elsewhere, sometimes to another table or ledge. I won't even look at them....well sometimes the promo card as it may have something worthwhile.
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Old 12-10-2015, 09:00 AM   #12
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Now if they would only turn up the lights so my old eyes can read the menu. Recently went to an Outback Steakhouse and had to use my cell phone as a flashlight to read the menu!
See how useful modern technology is?!?

Actually, the single best aspect of smartphones for us older folks is the ability to snap a photo of the 3 point type that the use for model numbers and serial numbers these day, so we can immediately blow it up so we can read it off to the customer service rep.
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Old 12-10-2015, 09:07 AM   #13
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I feel that way about screens but a beer list like that might be useful and easier to read then a paper book of descriptions. I need a list that has pictures of beer to help choose.
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Old 12-10-2015, 09:22 AM   #14
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I would love it! I can never hear what the specials are...just mumbles. I have to order off the menus most of the time.


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