Currently Google is in the in process of a massive expansion into robots and aerospace, with somewhat vague goals in mind. As part of this push, the company recently acquired well known military robotics company Boston Dynamics. This company has been at the forefront of the production of robots inspired by animals, such its four-legged Big Dog and Cheetah robots which can move incredibly fast.
In addition to these animal-inspired robots the company has also been building a humanoid robot. Called Atlas, this robot is being built to carry out tasks which are too difficult and dangerous for standard humans to do. However, moving with any form of speed around an uneven environment and on two legs, is very difficult and requires a huge amount of software and hardware optimization.
The latest video put out by Boston Dynamics shows that they have made great strides in this respect. The newest version of their Atlas robot is shown accomplishing impressive feats of balance, even while in motion. In scenes reminiscent of the Karate Kid, the robot balances on one leg while slowly moving its ‘arms’ and performing kicks with its legs. Watch it in action in the video below!
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