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Boston Dynamics Will Sell Robot Arm to Go With Its Robot Dog Next Year, Which Is Totally Fine

Illustration for article titled Boston Dynamics Will Sell Robot Arm to Go With Its Robot Dog Next Year, Which Is Totally Fine

Photograph: Mark Ralston / AFP (Getty Pictures)

Again in June, Boston Dynamics made greater than 150 units of its robotic dog Spot available for sale to exterior corporations and analysis amenities. The thought was to see what kind of real-world purposes these corporations and amenities would use it for, and get suggestions on the capabilities of Spot itself. Whereas Boston Dynamics didn’t make its robotic canine obtainable for individual shoppers (although Adam Savage did get his palms on one and paid for it $74,500, identical as the opposite corporations that purchased one), it’s rolling out a brand new addition for good boy Spot: an arm.

Beginning in spring 2021, anybody who desires to make their Spot a little bit extra versatile can add an arm to its robotic physique, reports Engadget. Though, honestly, the robo-dog seems to be extra prefer it has a very, actually lengthy neck with a tiny head and an enormous mouth. It’s like one thing you’d see a toddler draw on a bit of paper: an animal with warped proportions. However the arm kind of completes Spot and makes it extra dog-like. And as Boston Dynamics CEO Rob Playter instructed PJDM: “There’s way more to the arm than simply {hardware}. It is going to ship with an intuitive UI, and be outfitted to function via each telemanipulation and supervised autonomous behaviors.”

With the addition of an arm, Spot can open doorways, carry you a drink, and even differentiate between a unclean glass that goes within the dishwasher and a soda can that goes within the recycle bin. However its precise makes use of will doubtless be way more complicated than that.

“I consider that the mobility of the robotic will contribute to the dexterity of the robotic in ways in which we simply don’t get with present fastened manufacturing facility automation,” Boston Dynamics founder Marc Raibert stated on the Collision from Dwelling convention this previous June.

Spot can also be getting a charging dock the place it would routinely return to when it senses its battery is working low on energy. Like a Roomba. Or a drone. Or The Borg. Obtained to refuel with electrical energy!

At the moment, Spot is being utilized in varied industries, together with building, mining, and healthcare, to make issues safer for the staff that work in these fields. We’re nonetheless many, a few years away from with the ability to exit and purchase a model of Spot for the house, and even then I wager it would nonetheless be equally as costly. However the thought of getting a robotic round the home to assist with cleansing or different mundane duties is sort of neat.

And we’re in all probability headed in that course anyway. First got here the dishwasher to scrub our dishes, after which will come a robotic that can load the dishes into the dishwasher for you. However in the meanwhile, placing Spot to make use of in work environments that may profit from it essentially the most looks like the precise strategy to go.

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Joanna Nelius