coca-cola-small-world-machines-image-600-22961A machine is capable of many things. Capable of keeping us safe in the event of a crash; capable of providing relief in the form of a water or soda on a hot day; and capable of putting a building back on its foundation in the event of a disaster.

Since the Industrial Age, machines have impacted the way we conceptualize and create, at times making the process easier and execution quicker. Like all things, these machines have evolved, now impacting the way we connect and even live.

Machines met technology, and as a result we are finding that safety, health, and even friendship come easier. Don’t believe me? Here’s a fascinating example of just how.

Making a friend, despite differences

Coca Cola, number one on the list of best global brands, is recognized for its “brand promise of fun, freedom, and refreshment”. But what about friendship? It’s seemingly easy enough, in their commercials you see friends singing and laughing together, and typically all over a can of Coke. However, what about fostering friendship between two strangers from two different countries with 60 years of turbulent and violent history between them?

Coca Cola decided to take a stab at it. In the video below, you’ll see two vending machines assembled in two malls – one in India, the other in Pakistan. The vending machines created a “portal,” where whoever was brave enough to make a friend in the opposing country had the opportunity to do so.

The machines were equipped with 3D touchscreens that projected a streaming video feed onto the vending machine – then at the same time the user was filmed.

Their initiative, Small World Machines, was meant to “provoke a small moment of happiness…and culture understanding around the world”. Those two strangers were asked to draw a peace sign, dance, or just wave – all before receiving their drink.

The results? Memories, a new understanding, and as one Coca Cola brand manager put it, “A small step we hope will signal what’s possible.”

What else is possible?

Coca Cola is one example of many companies and individuals who are looking to machines to break down barriers and improve the quality of life. They are doing this by tapping into the already connected world.

What other positive things could you see coming from this connected world? I’d love to hear your thoughts or examples you’ve seen. Please share them with me in the comments or let me know on Twitter @LindseyNNelson.

Photo credit: 1M4U