Boston Dynamics Robots Can Now Do Gymnastics Routines and Manage Tricky Terrain

Atlas can do somersaults, while Spot can carry out 360 degree obstacle avoidance.
Chris Young

Boston Dynamics has just released an update on its two incredible robots, Atlas and Spot, with the latter now partially available for sale.

The two robots have famously prompted countless online commenters to say they will lead to a Skynet or Black Mirror-style apocalypse.

Two new videos published by Boston Dynamics today show off more of the robots' uncannily lifelike movement.


Robot or gymnast?

With every video of Atlas' capabilities that goes online, more commenters seem to suggest the robot will bring about the end of times for humanity.

Those with a nervous disposition might not want to watch the latest video of the robot doing pirouettes and somersaults. Others will marvel at the incredible advance it constitutes for robotics.

The video shows Atlas cohesively stringing together a gymnastics routine — including a handstand, a somersault, and a spinning jump — without losing its balance. 

In the video description, Boston Dynamics says Atlas uses a “model predictive controller” to seamlessly go from one move to the next.

The robo-dog is let off its leash

Boston Dynamics' Spot robo-dog is finally going on sale — sort of.

While it's not being released to the public, as The Verge points out, any company that has a good idea for how to utilize the robot can apply to buy one.

This does mean that the public will be much more likely to see Spot (formerly called SpotMini) in public spaces.

As the video description says, users can "customize Spot by adding specialized sensors, software and other payloads."

What's more, "early customers are already testing Spot to monitor construction sites, provide remote inspection at gas, oil and power installations, and in public safety." 

Boston Dynamics says the dog-like robot "is in mass production and currently shipping to select early adopters."

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