There are all sorts of vending machines out there in the world (just browse r/vendingmachineporn for a glimpse) but this particular one in Intel’s research and development center seems particularly geeky and endearing. Reddit user Glumbot says a friend spotted the machine inside Intel’s Folsom, Calif. office — it is used to dispense computer parts and supplies without requiring employees to request them from their IT department and wait for items to arrive.
The touchscreen machine, which runs on Intel’s Core i5 vPro processor and uses Intel’s AIM (Audience Impression Metric) suite, is also used to keep track of product inventory. Employees can use the self-service machine to “buy” parts by scanning their work ID and the cost is automatically charged to their department. Things you can buy include batteries, mice, flash drives, keyboards, cable locks, and laptop AC adaptors, according to a vending machine trade publication which covered its release in 2013.
So it’s not a new machine by any means, but it’s a pretty fun look into office culture at tech companies and their unique ways to increase workflow efficiency. (Mozilla’s offices have one too, albeit not a touchscreen.) My favorite part of all this is the gigantic sign next to the machine that lists simple instructions for Intel employees on how to operate a vending machine.