Is a Drive-Through Supermarket in Your Future?

Painless trips to the grocery, courtesy of a Russian polymath—or madman.

You may have never heard of Semenov Dahir Kurmanbievich, but we bet if anyone’s making massive battle drones out in a field somewhere, it’s this guy. His latest widget, a drive-thru supermarket, may revolutionize how you shop for cereal, antacids and fish. Kurmanbievich is already very active at filing patents for his designs, and if you can read Russian, you can see what those are about. Or you can just watch nifty, exceedingly dramatic YouTube videos about his would-be toys. Kurmanbievich envisions driving into a supermarket of the future, where each driver parks at a kiosk. Two-story-tall shelves that roll down on conveyer belts (so that the goods are beside the driver’s-side window) allow the driver to select whatever he wants, put those items on another belt that rolls forward, toward checkout, and all the goods are bagged there. The driver then pulls forward and pays.

Stocking is done behind the scenes by actual humans, although given how automated the entire process looks, why Kurmanbievich didn’t work out a way for drones to fly the food to the shelves, we’re not sure. At least that’s not in his video.


Call us disconcerted by Kurmanbievich’s mostly militaristic, automated, robotized view of the world. His ideas hew toward the dystopian, anyway. Another CGI shows how triple-wide pre-fab homes could be delivered via flatbed trailer and deployed instantly. You know, to house refugees—save that in the YouTube video, the housing is entirely camouflaged, and that’s maybe not the look you want for best resale value: