• Eccentricity

    • The cognitive computing team from IBM designed an algorithm that creates culinary recipes for chefs.

    Digital Gastronomy, using artificial intelligence to create new recipes / 

    In the eccentric times we live in, computers have not just gained ground in all sorts of disciplines; they have also earned the trust of artistsdoctors and, naturally, their users, who employ them as an extension of their own memory. And, trust is everything. Inspired by this, the IBM researchers are foreseeing a fairly near future where algorithms will replace inefficient client services, or will be used as a diagnosis tool for doctors, or incredibly, one for chefs.

    The researcher Lav Varshney, has already designed an algorithm that generates recipes based on parameters such as type of cuisine, dietary restrictions and courses. The system determines the best combination based on three things: hundreds of thousands recipes taken from prominent sources like the Culinary Education Institute, the Internet (a hedonist and limitless database that, basically shows what humans like to eat) and food chemistry. The result is a recipe book that offers suggestions with millions and millions of different ingredients, but no instructions for their preparation. The latter is a brilliant invitation to be more creative and to employ our basic and intuitive cooking skills.

    Thus, the purpose of this “computational creativity” is not returning to something we already know, but the complete opposite, to discover something new. For the time being however, the human is an indispensable piece.  No software can see the full culinary panorama as we do. A computer can make a few educated suggestions about ingredients that go well together (apparently chocolate and caviar are a perfect match), but it has no internal representation of what frying, cutting or filleting mean, and it lacks a sensitive understanding of what the communion of the palate and delicacy actually means.

    The algorithm will soon be available to the general public, but until then, we share with you the first (and perhaps delicious?) list of ingredients created by artificial intelligence:




    Pork leg



    Curry leaves



    Curry powder



    Green chillies


    Roast beef



    Tagged: gastronomy, Eccentricity, food