Dutch coffee company Douwe Egbert has apparently imported its latest vending machine directly from paradise.
Confident that a single taste would convert coffee drinkers to their brand, the company devised a clever way to spread the word. They built a vending machine that sympathetically dispenses a free cup of coffee to anyone who yawns in its presence.
Yes. Walk up to the machine, yawn, collect free coffee.
210 potential customers in South Africa’s O.R. Tambo International Airport were treated to the free java, courtesy of the often otherwise creepy phenomenon that is facial recognition software.
The software detects the shape and movement of muscles in the face, and comparing them to stored templates. As soon as it sees a yawn, it pours out a cup.
Yawning is a still-mysterious human activity over which scientists have entertained (and debunked) many theories. The current consensus is that it yawning may help lower body temperature to levels suitable for sleeping, according to Smithsonian Magazine.
So, then, why does yawning seem so contagious? Our natural human empathy, primate researcher Matthew Campbell told Smithsonian. As we do with smiles and frowns, we often mimic the facial expressions of those around us to understand and connect with those around us.
Contrary to popular belief, yawning does not serve the function of drawing oxygen into the brain. But for a couple hundred lucky flyers, it did draw in some much needed wakey juice.
Watch would-be customers struggle to find the coin slot, before getting the picture and yawning their way to liquid happiness (and, yes, you will probably yawn) :
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