Real Thai food has a strong balance of all flavors. I've never seen a good use of radar charts in engineering, but I think they'd be perfectly suited for assessing good Thai food which would have components to fill out the entire spectrum of sweet, sour, salty, bitter, spicy, savory, crunchy, chewy, etc. in a similar way that good Japanese food tries to throw in something of each primary color when arranging a dish.
As a case study, I present a common northern Thai appetizer: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M... , which illustrates this simply and perfectly, and is even presented like a radar chart. You combine each of the fresh and basic ingredients in roughly equal proportions to contribute to the package:
* sweet tamarind sauce for tang and to provide moisture
* sliced bird's eye peppers for sharp heat
* lime wedges (with rinds) for sour and bitter
* peanuts and fried coconuts to provide just enough crunch and crisp
* onion for some tear-inducing fumes
* ginger for some zing
* shrimp for chewy
* leaf to hold it all together
So I think a the tasting robot is a great start at characterizing the spectrum of flavor and texture and coming out with a signature of what kind of foods is more "Thai-like" than others, similar to how Pandora or whatever creates musical signatures to categorize sounds. Won't replace a human, but will help codify the process and bring you "close enough" to finding more of what you want.
Tourists focus on the spicy stuff, probably because that's the flavor they're least accustomed to. When Thai restaurants open in the US, they tone down the spice and everything else, and crank up the sugar and syrup, because, well, that's what americans are most dull to. Pad Thai, the staple of americanized thai cooking, is rarely eaten by natives in Thailand.
Another interesting cultural point... Western cooking expects the chef to have seasoned the dish to taste, and the cook would tend to get offended if you drown their dishes in salt / pepper or condiments like ketchup. In Thailand, however, the condiments are referred to as "krueng therm" (literally "engine fillup") and come with a wide variety of fixins... salt , pepper, sugar, sriracha, soy sauce, "orange" sauce with peppers, peppers in lime juice, crushed peanuts, etc. (GIS for "Thai condiments caddy). So back to the radar chart, the condiments are provided to help you push each spectrum and "fill out" the chart to as wide as you can handle.