Boston Dynamics is at it again with their robot pranks that have viewers calling for justice for the robot worker population! Okay, just kidding, it has multiple people on the Internet making awesome memes and gifs about the rise of the impending robot revolution which is much more entertaining and awesome. You may remember this company from some of the several other videos they've released to show their robot's capabilities with a sense of humor. The life-like characteristics of the robots make the human audience grab on to what's happening in the video more than what engineering is being displayed, but it gets tons of people talking.
In December, there was this bizarre Christmas card with a creepy happy holidays message from some of the strangest looking "reindeer" we've ever seen. And earlier in 2015, poor Spot was the victim of more workplace violence when a video of the robot being kicked by an employee was seen all around the Internet. The robotics work at Boston Dynamics is truly impressive and while the videos are meant to show off the hard work of engineers, the emotional game is strong when humans see a dog-like animal being kicked, or in this case, a hard working humanoid being bullied by a bearded man with a hockey stick.
The robot that's being picked on in this presentation is the newest generation of Atlas, a high mobility anthropomorphic robot designed to walk on two feet in rough terrain. The video shows Atlas walking through the snow and over hills with ease and later, we see the robot in action in a warehouse scenario. Since Atlas can navigate on two feet, the upper limbs are free to perform other actions, like lifting boxes. The video demonstrates the robot's ability to pick up 10 pound boxes and shelve them properly. The problem comes when the employee decides thats the robot needs a bit of a challenge and decides to play a game of keep away with the box. The robot is not deterred from its mission and follows the box to reposition itself to pick it back up and the game continues.
Moments later the bully is back at it again, this time pushing the robot over with some type of tubing. Atlas falls completely to the ground and seems to take a moment before returning to the upright position. While the humans are crying out at the horrifying workplace treatment, what we're really seeing are the pretty amazing features of Atlas using its 28 hydraulic joints to respond to its environment. This is the first time we're seeing a battery-powered version that doesn't have to stay tethered to a power source while it's completing the tasks and functions. Needless to say, Atlas is pretty impressive, so maybe that's why its co-worker is picking on it. The video ends with a departure from the office that has us imagining the robot muttering something along the lines of "Screw you guys, I'm going home." And can you blame it? Human jerks.
You can see the full YouTube video of the new Atlas below.
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