For it’s latest trick, Microsoft’s engineers have given the multi-touch Surface PC table a bartender’s sixth sense. If you set your drink down on top of it, the Surface will be able to detect just how full it is. At least, if it’s in a special glass.
The Surface needs a little help by way of a glass with a reflective prism inside of it. Surface can then use the light from its infrared sensors to bounce up into the prism and tell how far below the prism’s tip the liquid is. After that, either a waiter or bartender watching a feedback screen will swoop by to offer you a refill, or one can be ordered directly from the Surface tabletop.
I don’t see the world’s glasses changing just to please Microsoft’s drink detection system, but this is a pretty cool trick. Installing Surface in stores and offices already made a lot of sense and now, surprisingly, restaurants and bars look pretty good for it, too.