Actually CN does have microwave ovens in the engines. They also have hot plate burners too. CPR has hotplates too. It is handy, since we get a meal allowance, instead of a meal break. On our 240 mile run, it is handy to be able to have more than just a sandwich.
I like the idea of being able to isolate units from the leader. Conrail had this kind of system. They could save fuel, and run the leader wide open on the flat, but save time, by putting extra power on line for the hills.
The newer units can show how the trailing power is loading. This is handy because it lets the engineer know if there is a problem, without goin back to check. I don't like crossing between units..