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McDonald’s acquisition of machine learning startup Dynamic Yield was almost as big a surprise as when we found that out their fries were once fried in beef fat. Some were surprised. Others? Not so much.

By taking a serious interest in machine learning—well, literally a full interest— McDonald’s is simply keeping pace with technology and staying ahead of consumer needs.

Here’s how it works, as far as I understand it: McDonald’s has more data than a milkshake has empty calories. With this acquisition they can put it to good use, tweaking what and how menus offer up based on weather, location, time of day, and, of course, history. This capability can only speed up the ordering process, something both the customer and the hormone-drenched teenager behind the counter want badly.

It’s also right in line with the McDonald’s brand strategy and its promise of “simple, easy enjoyment.” Fewer, more relevant choices? Yes, supersize that for me, please.

Eventually, these capabilities will lead to McDonald’s narrowing down your choices based on who you are, with your permission, of course. Personally, I’m perfectly content not ever again having to think about there being such a thing as a McDonald’s lobster roll. Bleck.

I spend a lot of time researching and thinking about how machine learning and AI will impact brands’ abilities to connect with customers on an emotional level. For me, this one seems like the “lovin’ it” is safe.

What do you think? Let me know, please!

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