Thanks to all of our household appliances these days, being able to leave all kinds of tedious chores to our machines is really convenient.
In Milan, they’ve preserved a site where the women used to gather to wash clothes. Even local residents take a moment to stop and look alongside the foreign tourists, walking around the site and imagining what it must have been like when people were doing the washing back then. The Italians are so fond of singing that the women were surely doing the same, casually breaking into song and exchanging gossip as they scrubbed clothing against their washboards. These days, our convenient washers and dryers mean that all we have to do is press a button to have our clothes washed, spun, and dried.
So while their washing machines were spinning away and they were freed from all this scrubbing, I’m sure plenty of efficiency-minded housewives decided that they’d make use of the time by getting some cleaning done. And yet today, we see fewer and fewer women pushing vacuum cleaners around, either. Now it’s common to see cleaning robots keeping the house spic and span like faithful dogs—sucking up dirt and dust, wiping the floor down, drying it… and all of this gets done with a push of a button as well, thanks to our appliances.
Since the laundry and the cleaning are done with a touch of a button now, I guess we’ll move onto… dishes? No way! These days we just push a button on the dishwasher and everything is washed and dried for us. It wasn’t too long ago that people wouldn’t have been able to fathom the idea of just going around the house pushing buttons on appliances and getting all the household chores done.
Now that these faithful machines are taking care of all the work for us, what will we do with all of our extra time and energy?
The cooking? In Japan at least, everybody has a rice cooker capable of making perfectly-steamed rice every time, an electric kettle that will make soup at just the right moment, and a little grill made just for fish attached to their ovens—so there are all kinds of products helping us out with the cooking as well.
The food culture in Italy is a little different, so their most treasured cooking appliances are a little different as well. They have something that looks a bit like a rice cooker but is actually a fryer used to make potato fries and so on. Most people also have a slicer that will cut the big chunks of prosciutto they buy to whatever thickness the family wants. Families that like to have fresh-baked bread often have bread machines where you just throw in the flour, yeast, water, and whatever else and have the machine knead, rise, and bake it for you—and you have fresh bread on the table! Fully-featured cooking robots are also being developed these days, and they’re so good that people are saying that household cooking robots make better food than you can get in a restaurant. Not to mention that if you can put together a good menu, a single cooking robot can make the primo course (pasta or risotto), secondo course (fish or meat), and even the vegetable side at the same time. Wow!
I could really see the advantages of having a cooking robot when it comes to making pastries. This method of just adding ingredients according to the robot’s instructions means that you could keep your kitchen tools to a minimum and make cleanup a breeze. It strictly controls exact amounts, temperatures, and mixing speeds that are essential to pastry making, ensuring consistent quality every time. You can fully trust it.
So once we have a few robots doing everything for us, what will we do with our free time then?