Cookpit: culinary delights in pictures and words

For the start of the 2023 autumn semester, the ITS APPS section put the new “Cookpit” system into operation by working closely with the responsible departments at ETH, along with external caterers.

If there was a quiz question, would you be able to guess the number of different catering outlets at ETH Zurich correctly?

FUSION meal Free Flow Restaurant

Even if you couldn’t immediately call the 23 firms to mind, it is clear that publishing the numerous dishes offered by these restaurants every day requires complex IT support. Just in time for the start of the autumn semester 2023, the ITS Applications section has put the new “Cookpit” system into operation by working closely with the responsible departments at ETH and external caterers. Cookpit uses the latest web technology to ensure that the menus of all the catering outlets can be managed in a modern system and that interfaces are available for data input and output via various media.

The project, which lasted around nine months, has developed into a new system. It now complies with the current legal requirements for the publication of menu items, and displays the food prepared each day “appetisingly” on the catering firms’ monitors. The new system also presents the weekly and daily menus on the ETH web, provides the data for output in systems such as the ETH app, and provides a standard interface for data collection by ETH’s numerous caterers. Silke Rottler (Financial Services department) was in charge of the project on the specialist side.

Whilst implementing the project, there was a lot to learn about the composition of dishes in terms of modelling, as well as international guidelines on declaration obligations.

Cookpit is based technologically on a Java service layer with a PostgreSQL database and a Vue3 web interface for management. Operation takes place on Kubernetes. Separate Vue3 apps on the AEM and Bright Sign platform handle output on the web and on the monitors.

The following areas were involved in the implementation within ITS

  • Requirements analysis, architecture, realisation
  • Technical coordination, DB design, realisation
  • Web design, design of monitors and AEM pages
  • Realisation of Vue3 for monitors (external employee)
  • Quality assurance
  • Provision of BrightSign monitors
  • Coordination AEM / Monitors

Many thanks to everyone who was involved!


Andreas Jost, Group Head SW Project Services, ITS APPS, IT Services

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