There are a lot of videos of scary robots floating around the Internet, but most of those creepy robots are still in the early testing stages. Then, there are the fully functional robots showcased on the Boston Dynamics YouTube channel.
If you haven’t heard of them yet, Boston Dynamics is a robotics company that seems to be inadvertently creating the world's new metallic superspecies. Since the mid-2000s, they have made a name for themselves in the tech community by sharing robot videos of their creations doing all sorts of insane things. They have robots designed after a cheetahs that can run at crazy speeds. They have autonomous pack mules like BigDog that inspire fear with every step. They even have some disturbingly human-like models like Atlas and PETMAN. With each new release, Boston Dynamics raises the bar of what robots can be - and their mind-blowing creations are as scary as they are amazing.
PETMAN, The Foot Soldier Of The Robot Army
According to Boston Dynamics, PETMAN was initially designed to test chemical protection clothing for the military. It is able to simulate the effects a soldier has on the clothing, including performing complicated body movements that could tear the material. It is capable of moving around autonomously and untethered as well.
The human simulation doesn't stop at movement, however. PETMAN is able to regulate things like temperature, humidity, and even sweat to create the most accurate simulation of a real, living soldier.
BigDog Is A Four-Legged Terror
BigDog is 240-pound, all-terrain robot that can navigate many difficult wilderness settings with ease. The robot stands at about 2.5 feet tall and can carry loads of up to 340 lbs, making it a perfect pack mule for military missions.
Like most Boston Dynamics robots, BigDog is equipped with all sorts of sensors that allow it to move and balance. It moves at a comparatively sluggish 4 mph, and can be equipped with a robotic arm for heavy lifting.
WildCat Is An All-Terrain Nightmare
Boston Dynamics' WildCat is an evolution of their Cheetah design, and it has considerably more freedom. While Cheetah is capable of record-breaking speeds, it's limited to the treadmill. This update takes the Cheetah to the streets, and it's pretty impressive. Although it's a bit heftier, WildCat can run at a top speed of 16 mph. The goal is develop a version that can run up to 50 mph.
Spot Can Follow You Into Your Home
Spot is a miniaturized version of one of Boston Dynamics' other robots, BigDog. Spot is a 160-pound quadruped robot that is equipped with an advanced sensor on its head, which helps it easily navigate both indoor and outdoor environments. It is able to handle hills, stairs, and other difficult environments with little effort, and can even re-balance itself if it tips (or is kicked by a Boston Dynamics employee).