Baking Up An Automated Error

Technology and customization are wonderful things and when a grocery chain can use the Web to professionally pipe out personalized messages in cake frosting and then have it shipped--all without any human effort--it's a potentially incredible thing.

Let's stress the word potentially, as this picture of a cake that was delivered by the Wegman's grocery chain makes deliciously clear.

Automation is good, but common sense is nice, too. The computer system decided the bracketed HTML commands were part of the message. Some of those instructions were proprietary to Microsoft, but it doesn't look like vanilla HTML would have sliced any easier. Guess when it comes to saving personnel costs with automation and improving customer service, retailers can't have their cake and eat it, too.

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