PiePal: order a pizza at the push of a button

Here’s a Friday night quickie (no, we’re not nipping off to the pub unfortunately—we’re getting ready for tomorrow’s Manchester Raspberry Jam).

Ordering pizza can be such a chore. At the very least you have to pick up the phone and shout, “Bring! Pizza! Here!” At worst it can actually involve going outside and all that that entails. The fine folks at iStrategyLabs have put paid to this nonsense with PiePal, a one button pizza ordering system.

PiePal was designed in SketchUp and printed on a MakerBot Replicator 2. Inside, the Raspberry Pi hooks into the API of Domino’s online ordering system to automatically order your favourite pie when you press the button.

Press the button. You know you want to.

If this has tickled your taste buds–or, indeed, your fancy–you can sign up as a beta tester.

Now: how to stop people—who have gone to sleep on your floor a bit worse for wear—waking up at 3am with the munchies and mashing the PiePal like a crazed lab rat while repeatedly grunting, “Peeeeee-ZAAAAHH! Peeeeee-ZAAAAHH!”


The Raspberry Pi Guy avatar

Now that is something I would use!

The Raspberry Pi Guy

elmsley avatar

Okay these simple interfaces are getting out of hand. Where can we find useful projects that take advantage of pi’s price point that doesn’t ‘wrap’ web pages, or blink a single light? Without an extra laptop or live internet connection, a lot of these projects seem to be overkill. Oh Internet of Things, has your time not yet come?

billy avatar

I agree-this fun creative stuff is just so lame. Show us some relational databases.

Ben Shamsian avatar

Nice combination , Pizza & Raspberry Pi. I love both very much

Simon avatar

It seems like most of the guts of this are handled by an arduino – at least of the low lever stuff (lights, dial, button) – the RPi wasn’t even visible in any of the pictures of videos. What does an RPi bring to the table in this project? If a lot of the work is being done by an arduino, why not switch to an ethernet enabled arduino and cut down the hardware requirements in half? Alternatively, why not use GPIO on the RPi and handle all of the I/O there.

Jon avatar

The RPi is the computer that powers the different requests and responses to/from the Dominos API.

Handling all that stuff isn’t really a practical application for an arduino, but it’s perfect for the RPi. And an ethernet component would be just one more thing to plug in—far less cool, especially with the WiFi interface we had.

We certainly could have used the RPi’s GPIO for the serial communication (and did investigate that), but ultimately this was a fun hack, and we didn’t want to spend tons of time trying to patch that functionality into the otherwise awesome libs we used. I do think you’re right though—it’s entirely possible to axe the arduino component completely. We really just wanted to spend more time ordering pizza :)

IrishFramboise (AlanMc) avatar

Do Domino’s Washington DC deliver to the South of France? Might be a bit cold by the time it gets here though.

Otherwise I’d happily Beta-test that one…..mmmmm Pizza Pi. Or Else I might pop down to my local family pizzeria to see if they have an API.

Michael Lush avatar

This is a bit sort on technical detail. Its very easy to intercept keyboard from a USB device (be it keyboard, keypad, USB button mouse or joystick) Its rather less easy find out how to do it on the internet hence my posting.

The short answer is that USB HID (Human Interface Devices) ‘evtest’ announce themselves in /dev/input/event[1234]
you can find which one by running ‘cat /dev/input/event1’ etc and mashing the device to see which one generates a responce. ‘evtest’ can be used to parse that output, programatically your looking for Linux::Input in perl and python evdev.

Tim avatar

Shouldn’t that be beta taster?

AndrewS avatar

The webpage says they’re looking for beta tasters not beta testers ;-)

This needs buttons for choosing the pizza toppings, I don’t want the same pizza every time!

nazarko avatar

Looks good — I’ve started a basic implementation of Just-Eat in Raspbmc. The Pi could make a good food ordering appliance soon!

Matt Smith avatar

All we need now is a brain implant that knows when we`re hungry and what we want on our pizza and then travels back in time 30 minutes and orders the pizza, charges our paypal account and then the pizza is at your house with no effort exactly as you become hungry.

I wonder if other deliveries (indian, chinese, and such have APIs)

Scot avatar

Awesome! But there should be some sort of pass code to put in so you dont accidentally order pizza.

Pygar2 avatar

This would be a dangerous technology for a person with pets… Mental image: “Cat” on Red Dwarf, ordering fish… At the very least, it needs a shield to keep casual button bumps from ordering pizza…

CP44 avatar

[a few requests later] “Enjoy your meal” “I will”
Great catch and idea, Pygar. I’d prefer a button guard and a topping selector like Andrew said.
…at least I haven’t come across a Talkie Toaster yet…
[and the links for anyone who doesn’t get it]
Fish: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dkjbMoj0JY4
Toast: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LRq_SAuQDec

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