back to article LESTER gets ready to trundle: The Register's beer-bot has a name

Buoyed by the usual high quality feedback from readers, the office automated beer delivery service has taken a step towards reality with a suitable moniker. Reader lglethal suggested Beverage Utility Tasked with Liquoring up El Registerians, while ArrZarr proposed Ballistic Imbibement Trajectory Towards El Reg, which so nearly …

  1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

    symbol attached to the PFY

    Does it say "kick me"?

    1. Wyrdness

      Re: symbol attached to the PFY

      How about "Kick Me" embedded into a text QR code?

  2. Andrew Yeomans
    Pint

    User Friendly's version

    http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20180420

    (and a few earlier ones too such as http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20180403)

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: User Friendly's version

      Ahh ! Stop !

      I already wasted two hours on that yesterday !

  3. Charlie Clark Silver badge
    Pint

    In loving memory

    A suitable tribute. RIP Lester

    1. wolfetone Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: In loving memory

      Agreed.

      1. Locky Silver badge

        Re: In loving memory

        The last thing Lester will be doing is RIP'ing

        He'll be cooking a massive fryup on B. L. Z. E. Bub's own BBQ, and then flying paper planes on the thermals.

    2. Aitor 1

      Re: In loving memory

      Yep, he would have loved it.

      1. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge
        Pint

        Re: In loving memory

        He would have loved both building the bot and using it in practice, no doubt. Very fitting tribute! Let's all raise one to Lester's memory today

    3. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Pint

      Re: In loving memory

      RIP Lester.

      I suggest that in the light of Lester's inspiration, either they have to do another project afterwards, or LESTER needs to be given the ability to deliver snacks with the drinks. Perhaps a future enhanced capability to deliver post-pub nosh would be desireable?

      After all, the S in LESTER does stand for sustenance.

      Which I should know - as I'm also delighted to be a winner! Woohoo! I hope my prize will be my very own office beer delivery system? Obviousy that would include El Reg installing a fully working pub in the basement...

      However, my splendidly tortured backronym it may be - but the idea to use LESTER was Roger Varley's. I just came up with the barcronym to meet his spec.

      1. Blitheringeejit
        Thumb Up

        "barcronym"?

        If deliberate, inspired. If accidental, seriously serendipitous!

      2. ArrZarr Silver badge

        Re: In loving memory

        @Spartacus

        It was his idea, but your barchronym (sticking with that) was the better.

        Not bitter at all ;)

      3. Richard Crossley
        Pint

        Re: In loving memory

        When I worked in London there was a bar in the basement, now it would have to come from The Beer Bay* and negotiate a shopping mall and multiple lifts.

        --------

        * Shameless plug for the ladies running the Pier 3 bar "The Beer Bay" who stayed open a little later than normal so I could quench my thirst after hot and sweaty encounter with "The Twins" at Ching Ming Festival

      4. wolfetone Silver badge

        Re: In loving memory

        "After all, the S in LESTER does stand for sustenance."

        Does that mean it could deliver the Kleenex and vaseline for the dirty movie too? Y'know, susteance of the mind as well as the body.

      5. Grade%

        Re: In loving memory

        "LESTER needs to be given the ability to deliver snacks with the drinks."

        A packet of crisps should be popped out in a random direction upon upon delivery of libation -- might make for a fun betting game in itself.

        Once it runs out crisps a card could pop up with a nice "ding" with the statement "Run Out. Please ingest this card to stave off collapse. No further crisps until restocked. Sorry."

    4. TheBishop

      Re: In loving memory

      Agreed! And the robot definitely needs to feature the word "Tomfoolery" somewhere, perhaps emblazoned across the front as a fitting tribute? Lester would have loved it.

    5. Trollslayer Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: In loving memory

      A true El Reg comment

  4. x 7

    If it takes off, the demand for beer will drop.

    Most men only go to the pub to gawp at the barmaid's assets

    1. Huw D

      Seriously?

      I go to the pub for beer, music and friends.

    2. Stuart Castle

      I didn't. While I do appreciate a nice looking barmaid as much as the next man, and the pub I used to drink in had some very nice looking barmaids, I went in there because it had (and still has) a decent selection of beers, ales and lagers.

      Regarding the beer deliver system, I feel it is a fitting tribute to Lester Haines.

    3. macjules Silver badge

      That is why LESTER will have onboard cameras, one for each asset.

    4. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Most men only go to the pub to gawp at the barmaid's assets

      So… this particular bit of gadget porn is bound to increase demand, init?

    5. tiggity Silver badge

      obligatory Lancashire Hotpots link

      https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=iZt9c91QW1M

  5. Alister Silver badge

    Any volunteers?

    build a prototype able to follow a PFY around

    For the post of LESTER TESTER?

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Happy

      Re: Any volunteers?

      Volunteer must be called Sylvester or Chester...

      1. Ugotta B. Kiddingme

        Re: Any volunteers?

        or Fester Bestertester * the LESTER tester.

        * from the delightfully twisted mind of the late, great, Don Martin

        1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

          Re: Any volunteers?

          And wear a Sou'Wester?

      2. Steve K Silver badge

        Re: Any volunteers?

        Or Esther (sweet sherry for the ladies...;-))

  6. phuzz Silver badge
    Pint

    You know what bar staff would appreciate more? A robot that went around picking up empties.

    You don't need to take booze to the punters, they'll queue up to get it, but people will almost never bring their empties up to the bar (although you should if you want the bar staff to like you). Use the robot to do the boring grubby job of grabbing empties and filling the glass washer and leave the pouring and serving to the fleshy meatbags.

    1. tiggity Silver badge

      Though glass collector is an OK low wage job for those who struggle with drink serving

    2. Muscleguy Silver badge

      In New Zealand pubs it is de rigeur to taken one's empties up the bar when leaving the establishment. We do it here and get lovely smiles for doing so. You should try it some time.

  7. Tom Paine Silver badge
    Pint

    London pubs

    The Scottish Stores is a nice small boozer at the bottom of the Caledonian Road, with an interesting history (Victorian interior which had been boarded over during it's previous 20 years as a strip pub) and an excellent selection of what I understand the kids today call 'craft ale" but I call 'beer". FIver a pint, but it's central London. Haven't tried the roof terrace but apparently there's one up there somewhere.

    1. Muscleguy Silver badge

      Re: London pubs

      £5 for a pint? We only pay that at the Edinburgh festival. We can get much cheaper Scottish ales up here in Scotland. When drinking the real stuff the minimum price is not a factor. In fact it is not expected to impact pub prices much at all. Aimed at the white lightning etc drinkers at home, in parks etc.

      1. Insert sadsack pun here

        Re: London pubs

        "£5 for a pint? We only pay that at the Edinburgh festival. We can get much cheaper Scottish ales up here in Scotland."

        Well, yeah, obviously, but that's because rent is cheaper and wages are lower in Auchentyshoogle than in LoIFKCA (LOndon's Improbably-Fashionable Kings Cross Area).

  8. OGShakes

    Press for Beer

    A pub in Brighton did have booths with 'press for beer' buttons on the wall that would summons the bar staff to get your order. It lasted about 6 months before they turned them off. Apparently on a busy Saturday night as you carry 3 pints back to your mates you will spill about half a pint, if they bring them too you at your table they have to be full thus losing them the additional revenue from all those spilt drinks.

  9. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

    Can it please replace...

    Can it please replace the useless bar staff at All Bar One in Gunwharf Quays. A more inept customer un-oriented set of staff I have never come across.

    1. Hans 1 Silver badge

      Re: Can it please replace...

      All Bar One

      Given the name, I am sure there is one customer-oriented staffer, I guess they probably put him/her in the kitchen, though ...

  10. colinb

    Great, looking forward to this.

    Might be worth looking at some other positional options aside from visuals.

    This looks interesting a 'High-precision indoor positioning framework' using WIFI

    https://github.com/schollz/find3

    There are also commercial directional Fob finders such as https://loc8tor.co.uk/ which shows what can be done.

  11. ecofeco Silver badge
    Pint

    Lester makes perfect sense!

    After all, you couldn't trust Rimmer, the Cat or the robot to get it right, could you? Lester was the least incompetent of them all!

    Make mine an amber, er Red. And not a dwarf pint either. Cheers. -------------------------------->

    1. gotes

      Re: Lester makes perfect sense!

      Whilst I don't have access to the full crew roster of Red Dwarf, and there may well have been a Lester on board, the curry & beer loving protagonist from Red Dwarf was Dave Lister.

      1. gotes

        Re: Lester makes perfect sense!

        Also, "the robot"? He's a domestic mechanoid, Sir.

      2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Lester makes perfect sense!

        "Whilst I don't have access to the full crew roster of Red Dwarf, and there may well have been a Lester on board, the curry & beer loving protagonist from Red Dwarf was Dave Lister."

        I suspect he knows that, but a play on words doesn't work quite so well if you don't actually play with the words :-)

  12. dnicholas Bronze badge

    A camera gimbal would be ideal for a drinks platform, in fact I've seen a device just like that (for squishy bar staff to take trays to tables)

  13. GreenOgre

    Starter kit

    I'd suggest starting off with a base model Roomba or their open robotics version (without the brushes, etc).

    Good solid mechanics with an open interface for control. Solves the mechanical issues and lets you concentrate on navigation and avoiding spillage.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Starter kit

      "Good solid mechanics with an open interface for control. Solves the mechanical issues and lets you concentrate on navigation and avoiding spillage."

      Can one of those things handle carrying at least it's weight, maybe double it's own weight? I'm thinking gimballed tray + multiple pints here.

      1. colinb

        Re: Starter kit

        Its a good idea, you could have multiple with the frame mounted on top.

        The iRobot create has a drive direct command to control the wheels, each roomba has two drives.

        With some sensors for orientation it would be a good start.

  14. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
    Pint

    Oktoberfest

    Take the robot to Oktoberfest in Munich - bring it back in bits

  15. Richard 12 Silver badge

    Mechanics are woodworking

    Cheap battery drills are great - extremely high torque, designed to take abuse and it's easy to swap the chuck for wheels.

    Add some ebay speed controllers and a bit of basic woodworking, and It's Aliiive! Aliive I tell you!

    1. Grikath Silver badge

      Re: Mechanics are woodworking

      Sorry.. While logical and plausible, your approach misses the "massively overengineered by committee" flavour of a true Vulture Central Office Asset.

      There's standards to maintain, y'know..

      1. Richard 12 Silver badge

        Re: Mechanics are woodworking

        Ok...

        3D printed mounts for the motors?

  16. Dante Alighieri
    Boffin

    suspended in a swinging sling works better for momentum than a gimbal.

    Eliminates lateral acceleration (spillage)

    GIYF for no-spill solutions.

    THis allows for sudden stops or change of direction.

    Needs a broad based robot with a frame/arm to hang the free swinging pint

  17. Long John Brass Silver badge
    Holmes

    Wibbly Wobbly

    Sorry.. While logical and plausible, your approach misses the "massively overengineered by committee" flavour of a true Vulture Central Office Asset.

    Quite right; You need double sided tape to do it right :)

    Maybe this as a starting point for the prototype?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bI06lujiD7E

  18. Herby Silver badge

    Dual use??

    Maybe the beer should be only dispensed in the afternoon (for various times of "afternoon"). Then it might produce coffee and crumpets (doughnuts in USA) in the AM hours.

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