While at Maker Faire K.C. this year, I was sure to take my family to a spot we tend to visit every time we are near: Fritz’s. Fritz’s is a restaurant with an interesting food delivery method. The food itself is your standard faire of burgers and fries, however the railroad theme comes into play when your food is delivered by a model train on a track that runs along the ceiling. Your tray of burgers is deposited safely on a platform that is lowered (hydraulically?) to your table. The whole thing doesn’t look terribly complex, but it is fantastic fun.
We’ve eaten there several times and there is always excitement as each train leaves the kitchen towing some goods. There is also always a sigh of disappointment as it passes each table over on the way to its final destination. The little arm that stops the food on your delivery device doesn’t deploy until the last moment, leaving you guessing each time as to the final destination.
This year was particularly fun because the place was full of robot enthusiasts. I heard conversations all around me discussing the sensor networks, hydraulics, etc. I personally enjoy the theme, though if I were to build one I’d use the same mechanism but go 50’s sci-fi.