Boston Dynamics had a few issues during the demonstration of their four-legged robot, Spot, during the re:MARS conference this week. Spot was behaving well until, well, it wasn’t.
The poor dog-like robot got a little overwhelmed and went bottom up.
If Spot looks familiar, it's because it's the same robot that freaked us all out when it showed us how it could open a door back in February last year.
Boston Dynamics won't stop creeping us out
The same robotics company also brought us the backflipping robot. These robot demonstrations both prove that the future of robotics is incredibly bright and that making robots is incredibly difficult.
The company has provided some of the best demonstrations of totally futuristic robot over the last few years and this latest one at the Amazon re:Mars conference marks another massive step forward for the company.
Spot is up for sale.
There isn’t a hard sale date yet. A spokesperson for the company says a commercial version of Spot will be available within months.
The clever bot is currently being tested in a number of “proof-of-concept” environments, including package delivery and surveying work.
Spot controlled by game human
Most Boston Dynamics robots need to be controlled by a human handler using a modified gaming handset. Though they can also move autonomously but only in environments that have been previously mapped.
Lucky attendees at the re: MARS conference mingled with a couple of spot robots and some were even given a chance at being the robot's handler. Very little training or experience is needed to be able to successfully control the four-legged friends.
This is a big selling point for Spot, who is being marketed as a “mobility platform;” meaning they can perform a range of tasks and functions rather than a single repetitive action.
Spot: an answer to lots of problems
Spot can be fitted with a range of equipment to augment its function. It can be mounted with 3D cameras that can map environments such as work sites or developments. Spot can also have a robotic arm attached that makes it useful for manipulating objects and opening doors.
Boston Dynamic sprung from MIT in the early 1990s and for over two decades, they have been leaders in the robotics industry. They were acquired by Google in 2013 and sold last year to Japan's SoftBank Group for an undisclosed sum.