Just last week, a pair of Boston Dynamics Atlas robots Atlas successfully completed a complex obstacle course at the company’s headquarters, but they didn’t do it flawlessly. The first of the two made its way up a series of banked plywood panels, broad jumped a gap, and ran up and down stairs in the course set up on the second floor.
Reminder that science is still hard pic.twitter.com/1leibXqXBL
— Kyle Hill (@Sci_Phile) August 17, 2021
The second robot hopped onto a balance beam and followed the same steps, but in reverse, while the first one vaulted over the beam. Both landed synchronized backflips, and even though the routine may appear short, it took months of planning. A mishap occurred after the robots completed their backflips, was that one of them was supposed to pump its arm like a baseball pitcher.
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We hadn’t run that behavior after the backflip before today, so that was really an experiment. If you watch the video closely, it looks a little awkward. We’re going to swap in a behavior we’ve tested before so we have some confidence it will work,” said Scott Kuindersma, the Atlas team lead at Boston Dynamics.