Maybe it comes from watching all these sci-fi series and movies but I still have this fear that years or decades into the future, our robot overlords will rebel and make us humans their slaves. Seeing robots that use artificial intelligence and basically behave like people do not alleviate that fear. Of course that’s just the crazy in me and I know that the robotics industry is doing a lot of interesting and helpful things. We’ll see more advanced prototypes and eventually products that will hopefully not overthrow the human race.
Designer: Boston Dynamics
The Atlas robot was unveiled back in 2021, showing off its parkour and acrobatic moves which are impressive for a robot. Boston Dynamics posted a new video of the more advanced version of this robot and this time it is able to carry around things which will make it more useful for things like factories, construction, even airline baggage handling. Its “hands” are able to pick up objects and then toss them to wherever you program it. It is designed for “heavy lifting tasks” so it will be useful mostly for logistics.
The “hands” of the Atlas robot are actually made up of one fixed finger and a moving finger that are more like a gripper. The video shows the robot throwing a bag of tools to its owner but the lead up to that final action is pretty impressive. It’s able to pick up a plank of wood to help it go up to the scaffolding where he eventually throws up the forgotten bag. And of course, just to show off, it does a few more parkour moves after delivering the package.
The robot is still in the prototype stage and is mainly used for research by Boston Dynamics. But from what we’ve seen in the videos so far, this is very promising for industries that involve tasks like lifting heavy equipment. Well, as long as they do not eventually rise up against its owners, this is something that we can look forward to when it becomes available for businesses and commercial use.