More Human Than Human – Google’s Atlas Becomes More Hominoid

b1534223facf25ebaafa5d7ad3b1f393Atlas is a humanoid robot created by Google’s Alphabet-owned Boston Dynamics. The robot debuted back in 2013 in a competition conducted by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). The updated Atlas is the result of seven globally contracted research teams who developed the software that has given Atlas a better but more complex brain.

Atlas was first created as a means of disaster recovery for places that were too unsafe for humans to intervene such as nuclear plants and unstable buildings. Standing at 5 ft. 9 in tall and weighing in at about 180 pounds, the new Atlas is more nimble and smaller than its previous version. It is fully mobile in comparison to the previous model which had to be hooked to a computer. Atlas can walk through snow without losing its balance, open doors, stand up after falling down and place things on a shelf.

Using sensors which are embedded throughout its legs and body and legs to help it balance, lasers for sensing objects, navigating and avoiding obstacles, Atlas is a one of a kind brainchild. Atlas can also maneuver through different types of environments by walking, climbing stairs and dodging debris using its hydraulic joints.