Of course by “you” I mean “consumers” and by “consumers” I mean Americans in general. What is prompting such a negative comment from me? A recent article in the Wall Street Journal titled, “Smart Carts Warn Shoppers on Junk Food.” The article describes how new shopping carts are being designed that feature bar code readers and screens which would inform the carts users about caloric and other information about the food.
One of the goals of the product seems to be a nobel one: if your cart can tell you the nutritional information, there is less need for packaged foods, because consumers can buy more unpackaged food and still know the full nutritional information.
As a young, hip internet guru, I’m usually one to embrace technological advances like this one, but this idea just pisses me off. Want to eat healthier and not buy too much junk food? Why don’t you PAY ATTENTION to what you are buying, and learn BASIC information about the foods you buy and put into your body. It’s not like this is a system that is giving you information about some obscure product that will sit on a shelf in your garage. No. We are talking about the substances that you put in your body each day, and you should be able to determine what those are and why you buy them without a computer on your cart telling you one way or the other.
Take responsibility for yourself and be a little more aware of what you are eating, don’t punch a code into a computer and have it tell you what you should or shouldn’t buy.