Giraffe-Like Robot Walks, Climbs, and Loads the Dishwasher


Over the past few years, robot technology has gotten animalistic in a very impressive way. Companies like Boston Dynamics have created agile, dog-like bots that mimic the movements of four-legged animals and can perform impressive feats both autonomously and with human guidance. The Verge reports that the newest addition to the Boston Dynamics family is the SpotMini, a smaller version of the Spot bot that was introduced last year. Able to jog and traverse uneven terrain like its older brother, the SpotMini has learned a few new tricks and can be fitted with a long neck that doubles as an arm.

Boston Dynamics writes on YouTube that the little guy can last 90 minutes per charge and weighs in at only 55 pounds. To assist with mobility and navigation, it's equipped with depth cameras and sensors in its limbs. The video above shows the SpotMini's ability to move around an obstacle-filled space, climb stairs, and prance. And with its new neck, the robot can be made to grab and move objects around, which comes in handy for loading the dishwasher and fetching a beer. The robot also has a wide range of motion, as shown by its weird dance in the GIF below.

Previous Boston Dynamics bots were famously difficult to topple no matter how hard the engineers kicked and pushed them. But as the video demonstrates, SpotMini can be foiled by a pile of banana peels, though it can also pick itself up and prance away. 

[h/t The Verge]

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