In retailing, as in life generally, consumers usually applaud technology for its ability to cut much of the tedium out of many tasks. For example, self-checkout lanes, adopted by thousands of supermarkets, give the shopper an alternative to waiting on a long conventional checkout line; instead, they can opt for an empty self-checkout lane and simply do the scanning themselves. Some food retailers, such as Stop & Shop and Food Lion (in its Bloom stores), are testing portable ...

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