This week in AI and ML news: A chatbot in the drive-thru, major changes at Google and more.  

Author’s Note

From May 20-23, Chicago is hosting one of the year’s premier events for restaurant industry professionals and we couldn’t be more excited. Members of the Plainsight team are headed out to the home of deep dish pizza to join our partners from Connection to talk about how adding vision AI to the menu can bring restaurants into a new era. 

Attendees are encouraged to stop by Booth 7077 to see live demonstrations of Plainsight edge vision AI solutions for restaurants on Optra Edge hardware powered Lexmark.  

Can an AI Chatbot Take Your Order?

Speaking of restaurant innovation, Wendy’s is collaborating with Google to introduce advanced chatbots to the drive-thru ordering process. The fast casual chain is working with the tech giant to add a specialized new large language model to its existing generative AI repertoire. In addition to recognizing franchise-specific lingo (JBC for junior cheeseburger, for example) and “upselling” customers (“why not a large soda?”), the solution will need to understand a range of accents and dialects to ensure accuracy. Wendy’s and Google are designing it to filter out distractions like backseat chatter too. 

The chain plans to debut the first-ever Wendy’s FreshAI-powered drive-thru at a single Columbus, Ohio location this summer. During this initial trial run, a human employee will oversee the solution’s activities and intervene if it proves incapable of successfully filling an order. Speaking to The Verge, Wendy’s Chief Information Officer, Kevin Vasconi, describes its new drive-thru as, “enhanc[ing] the customer and crew experience by taking the complexity out of the ordering process.”

Learn more about how vision AI solutions provide a not-so-secret recipe for more satisfied customers, decreased costs, and super-sized boosts to operational efficiency in two recent interviews with our team.  

Google’s AI-Powered Innovations

As predicted, the itinerary at Google’s I/O conference this week, was heavily focused on AI. Near-term updates include an overhaul to Google’s flagship feature, Search. A limited number of users are expected to gain access to the updated Search features within the coming weeks. Others are invited to sign up for a waitlist. 

Though Google is hard at work on a rival to OpenAI’s Chat-GPT, updates to Search aren’t all about chatbots. The new and improved Search function is instead centered on what Google terms “AI snapshots.” With the help of large language models, Google now delivers users AI-informed search results with additional details to help them more quickly and easily find what they need and make the right decisions. A search related to bluetooth speakers, for example, will result in details on where to purchase speakers as well as insights on what sets the best options apart. Check out more details on the big changes coming to one of the Internet’s most popular sites. 

EU Explores New AI Guardrails

As emerging AI solutions continue to dominate the newscycle and spark often alarmist conversation, governments and regulatory authorities the world over are quickly making attempts to enforce new standards. In the European Union, however, lawmakers are putting what could be finishing touches on rules that have been in the works since 2020. 

This week, both the EU’s Internal Market Committee and its Civil Liberties Committee approved a new draft of the years-in-the-making AI Act. First approved in October of 2021, the AI Act is the first legislation of its kind, far-reaching and comprehensive in its attempt to standardize an approach to AI. Among its notable features is a classification system for AI solutions based on perceived level of risk. The latest changes come in response to the explosion of generative AI solutions over the last year-plus. These updates primarily concern what the European Parliament calls “intrusive and discriminatory AI systems” and include bans on use cases including predictive policing and emotion recognition in specific contexts.  

Read more about the latest changes to the AI Act, expected to become law across EU nations within the coming months. Once passed, it is likely the EU’s rules will inform future legislation around the globe. 

About the Author & Plainsight

Bennett Glace is a B2B technology content writer and cinephile from Philadelphia. At Plainsight, he plays a central role in planning and delivering content that supports Plainsight’s efforts to make vision AI success a repeatable, scalable reality for enterprises across a range of industries. 

Plainsight provides the unique combination of AI strategy, a vision AI platform, and deep learning expertise to develop, implement, and oversee transformative computer vision solutions for enterprises. Through the widest breadth of managed services and a vision AI platform for centralized processes and standardized pipelines, Plainsight makes computer vision repeatable and accountable across all enterprise vision AI initiatives. Plainsight solves problems where others have failed and empowers businesses across industries to realize the full potential of their visual data with the lowest barriers to production, fastest value generation, and monitoring for long-term success. For more information, visit

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