The following is an excerpt from Jack Nica | February 24, 2016 | WSJ.com |
The Boston Dynamics unit of Alphabet Inc.GOOGL -1.39% released a video showing a new version of its humanoid robot Atlas walking out of its offices, trudging through a snow-covered forest — and withstanding abuse from its developers.
The new Atlas is smaller than its predecessor and not tethered to a power cord, suggesting the device is progressing in its journey from the lab to the commercial market.
The video released Tuesday shows researchers knocking boxes out of the robot’s “hands” and knocking it over. But Atlas perseveres, repeatedly picking up the boxes and climbing to its feet.
The new Atlas is about 5-foot-9-inches tall, weighs 180 pounds and runs on batteries, the company said in a caption posted with the video. Earlier versions were roughly 6-feet tall, 330 pounds, and tethered to a power source.
The new version uses sensors in its legs and body to balance and lasers and optical sensors in its head to navigate and avoid obstacles, the company said.
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