Nathan Myhrvold's Recipe for a Better Oven
But why stop there? With ideal technology, you could put different parts of your meal in a single oven and it could figure out how to cook them so that they were all done at the same time in the way you want them. To do that, we need a way to focus just the right amount of energy on each part of the food and to measure how it responds to the energy. This would likely require ovens made out of new materials—not just sheet metal—that could be monitored and controlled in finely grained detail: Imagine an LCD in which each pixel gives off not colored light but powerful infrared energy. When you put a slice of toast on top, you could control how much heat is delivered to each spot on the toast—resulting in evenly toasted bread, or, perhaps, toast with a shaded image on its surface. That would be the ultimate cooking technology.