Boston Dynamics’ founder, Marc Raibert, recently gave a TED Talk where he trotted out some of the company’s recent innovations. The talk mostly features robot tricks we’ve seen before, except for a brilliant outtake of ATLAS trying to help out in a cafeteria that probably serves as the most accurate look at what life with humanoid robots will be like for the next few decades.
Raibert’s lab, which is now owned by Japan’s Softbank, hasn’t delivered much in terms of consumer-ready products—unless you count the wonderful GIFs of robots stumbling, falling, and generally making you wonder why these things cost millions of dollars to build.
On one hand, it’s disappointing to have more proof that your dream of owning a competent robotic housekeeper isn’t going to materialize for at least a few more decades. But on the other hand, watching these robots stumble around like drunk toddlers means there’s no reason to fear a robot uprising until you’re retired and no longer care about the future.