Saturday, March 04, 2006

"Big Dog" the robotic pack mule

Boston Dynamics is building this four-legged robot for the U.S. military (DARPA):
A nimble, four-legged robot is so surefooted it can recover its balance even after being given a hefty kick. The machine, which moves like a cross between a goat and a pantomime horse, is being developed as a robotic pack mule for the US military.
In this amusing or perhaps creepy video (28MB Windows media file), the robot walks over different types of terrain--including mud, rocky ground, and snow--and is given a few kicks to show how it stabilizes itself. Unlike the photo at left, in the video it looks like a pantomime horse with both people facing each other--sort of the opposite of a pushmipullyu.

(Via jwz's blog.)

1 comment:

Einzige said...

There must be something to that leg configuration, since that's the way dog and cat legs work, too (except that they've also got a couple extra joints at the extremeties).

...and if you think about it, if we get down on all fours like that our elbows and our knees are pointing at each other...

But definitely a creepy video!