When I was about eight, I dropped a jar of mayonnaise on the ground, covering my mother's feet in oily funk. She flipped out and started to chase me with a whiffle bat. I think she was drunk.

It's a good thing my mother wasn't a robot developed by the RiSE project, a joint venture by researchers from a variety of universities, because hiding in the top boughs of a tree would not stop their six-legged RiSE robot from plucking me off like so much ill-behaved fruit.