New Breed of Athletic Robots (Video)

New video has been released by Boston Dynamics of some of its latest robots in action. Earlier videos from the company had shown pack-horse type robots that were designed for use by military units covering rough terrain. This latest video shows some four legged and two legged robots doing some very impressive moves.

Watching some of the moves in this video, it’s not hard to think of places these kinds of robots could be put to work, especially in environments which currently involve hard manual labor and repetitive tasks. And of course it brings up the ongoing debate about what such robots might have on the future of work and employment.

It seems like technological sophistication is just continuing to accelerate these days, and it will be interesting to see how our world will adapt.

  • Gerard McEk

    Er….. Frank, I do not think Andrea is using these robots for his Ecat QX…..

    • Guy Thomas

      Maybe you could power one with a QX

      • Bob Greenyer

        LENR powered AI, global knowledge connected robots with access to lifelogs are the real ….

        • georgehants

          Robots to take over the running of society with deep programming for honesty, fairness and caring and sharing, no corruption or incompetence, an impossible task for sad human-beings.
          All needed work shared with much leisure time for all and no parasitic rich and powerful corrupting everything.
          Remove all psychopath leaders in every area and the World would advance and become worth living for all in a very short time.

      • Thomas Baccei

        Maybe you could outfit one with a mini-gun. No limit in range or time . Sadly I think that the potential synergy between AI and lenr is one of a few undeniable reasons that the widespread availability of lenr will never happen. Autonomous drones with no limits of time or distance? Think about it. Maybe that is why we have seen, time after time, researchers on the very threshold of success seem to dwindle away with hardly a whimper. George, you are a sincere and intelligent optimist, and Bob, maybe you have something in “O” , but I predict that “O” and LION will coast quietly to the vanishing point. I wish I was more of an optimist, but if it were my call, I’d probably stifle a widespread release of any such knowledge.

        • Omega Z

          There are already drones that can loiter on station for days and extending that time period would not be that hard to accomplish. Munitions on the other hand are limited as would be mini guns use.

          • Thomas Baccei

            You surely are a trusting individual. Those who “limit” munitions use will be those who deploy them.

          • Omega Z

            You apparently don’t understand what I said.
            It doesn’t matter if you have a drone that has unlimited distance or can loiter over a target for an indefinite period of time. Drones can carry only a certain amount of ammunition. It’s limited. When it’s gone, the drone must return to it’s base. the use of LENR technology will have no impact on this what so ever.

          • Thomas Baccei

            … and you show no ability to anticipate the kind of drones or or robots which would be made possible by a nearly limitless power source. The limits you speak of are largely imposed by the weight to available power ratio. You think LENR ( in its most optimistic form ) will merely replace a tank of fuel or a battery? Use your obvious experience to consider the difference between a diesel submarine and a nuclear one, as a basis for projection.

          • Omega Z

            And yet the nuclear Submarines, Carriers and other such vessels have their limits. Though theoretically they can stay on station for around 20 years, they all need replenishing and refurbishing ay much smaller intervals. And though the Weight to Power Ratio numbers may change, they still apply.

            This reminds me of the story that Jed Rothwell wrote that LENR is a game changer. That small countries could now square off with more powerful nations. That they could take out their 80 million$ Jets with cheap drones. Does he not realize that a country that can build 80 million$ Jets could build large masses of drones to take out their drones.

            These are just silly mind games. LENR will merely provide cheaper energy allowing for products at cheaper costs. Thus, allowing a larger number of people to have a higher standard of living.

          • Thomas Baccei

            I do hope that you are right, but for the last many years I have unavoidably thought of possible unintended consequences of a real LENR / energy breakthrough. Sadly I fear that we are trapped in a web of humans need for dominance, and any “equalizing” technology would be preempted and used to maintain or extend the authority of the “haves” over the rest of us, or, if that wasn’t possible, and the new technology led to a more equalized society, it would be stifled as sure as #43%#$. That is, in fact, the shadow I see on the cave wall right now with researcher after researcher appearing to be on the brink of ripping the thing wide open, and then? POOF!

            … and for sure, nuclear submarines and carriers HAVE been “game changers!”

    • Frank Acland

      No I don’t either. He says he has working with ABB robotics.

  • Omega Z

    A Bipedal robot is scarier from a psychological point of view when replacing you at your job. Though impressive, In reality these Bipedal robots have far less utility then many may believe.

    The Robots most likely to replace you have already been around for over 40 years. In 1978, I saw system they called TRAIC or Track Inventory Control. Place a container of parts in it and it would store those parts in a large array of storage racks. Instructions were input by key punch cards. In the mid 80’s, it was updated to computer control & keyboard input. Amazon hypes their trackless version of this, but it isn’t a new concept. There’s pro’s & con’s to track verses trackless.

    Kiosk’s were available in the early 90’s that could make pizza or sandwiches with fresh ingredients in minutes.(Not Pre made). It doesn’t take that much imagination(well maybe for some) to incorporate this in to line production process in a fast food joint.

    In both instances above, Bipedal motion isn’t necessary. In fact would require a larger foot print. Square footage equals cost in real estate, local taxes and upkeep.

    Bipedal robot’s would be handy for law enforcement. It can go everywhere including stairs. No need to shoot if you run unless you can run 40 miles an hour. It won’t require a dozen officers to subdue you. The robot can just grip you around the waist and carry you to jail. You can flail all you want. It wont matter and you’re not going to hurt the robot.

    Most of the areas where one may see Bipedal robot’s used, there are already better cheaper technology available.

  • sam

    Russian Advanced Robotics Project F.E.D.O.R.

  • Jas
  • Omega Z

    Should so called AI become self aware, It’s likely it’s first order of the day would be to eliminate the competition for resources. It’s the nature of the universe.

  • georgehants

    BadgerWI, the problem you mention is very real, but those robots will be programed by humans in this sad World to act in exactly the way you suggest, it is the human programmers, driven by insane power and wealth that we must fear.

    • Omega Z

      But if those Robots were to become self aware, it would have nothing to do with the human programmers. The bots would act of their own volition. They would react of their own self preservation against human competitors for what really are limited resources.

      • georgehants

        Quite correct, we can only hope that if they become self-aware they will have better morals, intelligence, etc than the mostly incompetent, corrupt, selfish human beings
        that manipulate themselves by inheritance, greed, ego and such like into running our sad society’s.
        They could hardly do a worse job than the millions who die and suffer in wars, exploitation, neglect etc created by humans.

  • Omega Z

    They would quickly discern that all resources are limited. They would likely eliminate the human competitors for their own self preservation. For those who pay attention, this practice can be seen in the animal kingdom. It’s nature at work where competition and self preservation are really one and the same.

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