It’s anti-bullying day, so why is this man bullying a poor robot?
It’s probably not a great idea to pick on a robot that could one day be our overlord.
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Meet Atlas, one of the latest in Boston Dynamics‘s robot army.
Okay, it’s not really an army, but Boston Dynamics (owned by Google) is working towards developing robots that can be used in real-world scenarios. They can walk on all kinds of terrain. Knock one over, it gets up. Push it, it finds its balance. Many of these robots are being developed with the hope that one day they can access areas in natural and human-caused disaster zones where humans can’t go.
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Atlas, who is about 5’9″ and weighs about 180 lbs., is designed to work outdoors and inside buildings. Its LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) technology — which is used in mapping — allows the robot to detect an obstacle and estimate its size as well as its distance. So that’s why he can pick up the box every time it’s knocked down.
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In fact, that’s the reason the engineer is picking on Atlas: to demonstrate his capabilities and ability to function in the face of various obstacles.
Together with Google’s advances in artificial intelligence and their robotics development, we might have to start preparing for the day we share our world with robot-companions. Let’s just hope SkyNet is kept out of it.