Future Mule

Gizmodo: “Boston Dynamics keeps working on their BigDog quadruped robot, which will probably grow to be the future AT-AT of the Pentagon.” Video:

Something about the way the bot moves elicits sympathy in the viewer – its motions are so animal-like they throw you. When the researcher kicks BigDog to demonstrate how it can regain its balance, my first reaction was one of sympathy for “the animal” – internally, I had already started to identify it as a living creature (and thus as sentient). But the whine of the two-stroke Briggs & Stratton lawn mower engine keeps you reminded. Wonder why it isn’t electric?

More here.

Music: Steve Hillage :: Sea Nature

2 Replies to “Future Mule”

  1. “When the researcher kicks BigDog to demonstrate how it can regain its balance, my first reaction was one of sympathy for “the animal”…”

    I felt the same thing. That is pretty amazing. Its movement reminds me of two people facing each other with torsos bowing toward each other butting heads, walking in unison. Its legs seem very human-like, and its ability to regain balance was very impressive. Project this ten or twenty years into the future…

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