Posted in Kafevend Blog

Well, I threatened that I'd do another one on peculiar vending machines, so here it is. Last time, I had a look at some of the different items that you could find inside the machines, so this time I intend to look at the stranger mechanical aspects of the machines themselves that folks have come up with over the years- there have been some interesting ones!

There are many vending machines that have dispensed with that tired old notion of paying for things, and instead require potential customers to get their goodies in a more novel way:

-Students at the University of Singapore were surprised one morning to find a Coca Cola vending machine emblazoned with the words "Hug me" on the campus. Sure enough, showing the machine a little affection would net you a free cola.

-A Douwe Egberts coffee dispenser in a South African airport was designed to give free pick me ups to anyone it detected yawning, thanks to an integrated camera with yawn recognition abilities.

-The Australian company Fantastic Delites decided to see how far people would go for a free bag of rice snacks. A screen made increasingly bizarre requests for people to receive their freebie, including dancing, bowing, hopping around and pressing a button a few thousand times.

Human interaction isn't always required, thanks to Jamie Hyneman of Mythbusters fame. He designed a caterpillar track mounted, soda can firing vending machine that appeared in a 7-up T.V. advertisement. Having watched it trundle around a beach delivering high velocity refreshment to the general public, I'm not sure it's the future of vending machines, but it's certainly entertaining.

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