The new Robot-dog of Boston Dynamics will impress you - Dispatch Weekly

February 26, 2018 - Reading time: 4 minutes

In a recent video, we meet again “SpotMini” the new Robot from Boston Dynamics. In this video, we can see the Dog-cyborg, who was already capable of opening a door by himself, resisting a human who tries to disturb him during his mission.

In this episode, Boston Dynamics filmed the quadruped robot surmounted by a robotic arm, battling with a man. This man is trying to stop the Robot from opening the door with a hockey stick. The scientist first blocks the arm of SpotMini with the stick, imperturbable, the Robot doesn’t give up and keeps trying to open the door. Despite all, the robotized arm is nevertheless controlled by an engineer until it is just in front of the handle. Almost all of the other actions are displayed by the Robot himself, autonomously.

See the video here:

The Robot can handle his loss of equilibrium.

In the video, you can finally see the robot open the door, but when he tries to cross it the scientist violently pulled back SpotMini. The Dog-robot still succeeds to stay on his feet and the final result is that SpotMini manages to open the door and leave the room.

What’s the point of creating a Robot that can open doors?

The robot can open doors while being disturbed by humans, but previous videos showed that Spot Mini was also capable of putting dishes in the dishwasher or climb some stairs easily. This means that SpotMini is able to achieve some basic home task thanks to it’s battery of sensors and cameras which allows him to map the space in 3D and to perceive the depth of field, both to move and to manipulate objects. These abilities could help handicapped people at home for instance, or become the new guide dog.


Apparently, Google wants to get rid of Boston Dynamics

It turns out that Google, which acquired this company in 2013 from work conducted at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), would now like to get rid of it. Google is actually worried by the public opinion about new Robots that are created nowadays. Indeed, on YouTube and all the social media, we can feel a type of anxiety coming from people, especially after the release of a video showing the newest Humanoid Robot: “Atlas”. Some folks even mentioned the word “Skynet” on some commentary on YouTube, which is the artificial intelligence that wants to destroy humanity on the “Terminator” movies.

These words are dramatic but the thing is that if those types of technologies become uncontrollable or end up in bad hands, the consequence could be disastrous.


DW Staff

David Lintott is the Editor-in-Chief, leading our team of talented freelance journalists. He specializes in covering culture, sport, and society. Originally from the decaying seaside town of Eastbourne, he attributes his insightful world-weariness to his roots in this unique setting.