Grocery shopping the cognitive way

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groceryshopping2Buying groceries. What a drag.

You have to think about what your schedule is that week and what the rest of the family is up to. You have to think about what the kids will eat, even though that changes on a daily basis. Have you got friends or a family event coming up this week? Should you risk a barbecue? You’d better not forget all the bits for packed school lunches now the holidays are over, either.

Maybe you’ll just get all the stuff you usually buy every week, but you must remember not to buy baked beans or onions, because you have stacks of them for some reason. Why not try and be a bit healthier, too, and try and save some cash this week?

Sound familiar?

Well, here’s how I envision the future of grocery shopping thanks to cognitive computing:

Right, let’s see what my Shopping Assistant has for me this week. Great, it’s seen that I’ve got Clare’s birthday in my diary and suggested a barbecue because the weather looks good on Friday. Oh, it’s seen that I’m pressed for time on Monday and Thursday, too, so some quick meals there. OK, Tuesday I have a bit more time, so I can use some things up in the cupboards and freezer. I do want to eat a bit more healthily this week, so let’s see what difference that makes. Fine, a few things have changed and it looks like some lower fat-options have been substituted in. Wow, and it’s still within the budget. I’m happy, so I’ll click here and it can go do the shopping while I head off to the pub.

In the background, my Shopping Assistant has built up a profile of my food likes and dislikes from my buying habits and prompts. It has access to my diary to schedule deliveries from online retailers and to see special events and I’ve given it a weekly budget. It can tap into weather data and plan stews and soups for rainy evenings or barbecues and salads for sunnier times. It can gently broaden my eating horizons by getting me to try things I normally wouldn’t, based on similar things I like. It gets suggestions from Chef Watson, too. My assistant even helps me to reduce waste by tracking what comes in and gets eaten, so no more stockpiling baked beans.

Now, if only it could do the cooking and cleaning, too.

Experience the latest cognitive solutions enhancing user experiences in retail and other industries at Amplify 2016: outthink ordinary.

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