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Robotics Hardware

Unboxing Boston Dynamics' DARPA-Ready Atlas Robot 42

mikejuk writes with some robot eye candy, in the form of this excerpt: "If you think its cool to video the unboxing of your latest mobile phone — think again. Unboxing a robot has a lot more going for it and reaches a whole new level of sci-fi realized. The Atlas robot is a standard humanoid robot to be used by competitors in the DARPA Robotics challenge. Built by Boston Dynamics, it is in the same line as Petman and BigDog. It is now being delivered to the labs that will take part and the temptation to make an unboxing video has been irresistible They arrive in plain of wooden crates as if they were auto parts. Next it is unwrapped and lifted out of its packing case using a crane. It looks black and threatening — just like a sci-fi movie but watch the videos and see."
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Unboxing Boston Dynamics' DARPA-Ready Atlas Robot

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  • by Animats ( 122034 ) on Sunday September 08, 2013 @03:43PM (#44791799) Homepage

    That's a nice piece of machinery. Much good mechanical engineering went into that robot. It took $120 million to get to this point, via BigDog and the LS3. DARPA is really throwing money at this, and it's working.

    The DARPA competition in a simulator in August indicates that the perception software is getting reasonably good, but the movement software from the teams still sucks. The best team had 12 falls in simulation. My guess is that the results in December 2013 won't be very impressive, but by round 2, in 2014, the robots will be moving much better.

    Teams are provided with a .so file (no source) from Boston Dynamics which allows control of the robot and has some functions for basic walking behavior. But the code Boston Dynamics provides to teams is not the good stuff they use internally.

Doubt isn't the opposite of faith; it is an element of faith. - Paul Tillich, German theologian and historian