Boston Dynamics Atlas Robot “learns” to grab and throw objects; watch

Boston Dynamics Atlas Robot "learns" to grab and throw objects;  watch

This week, Boston Dynamics shared the new tricks its famous Atlas robot has learned. In the update, a team of engineers from the North American robotics company assured the humanoid robot the ability to pick up objects, through a tweezers that works like a human hand, only with three “fingers”.

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In the demo, Atlas can be seen carrying different types of objects, such as a gym dumbbell, a wooden board and even a tool bag. One of the scenes depicts one of people’s “biggest dreams”: having someone come down the stairs and get you what you need, while you stay focused on another activity.

Below, check out the new demo, released on Wednesday (18), of the latest Atlas update:

It should be noted that the robot operates in a fully controlled environment, the Boston Dynamics facilities. Including, the making-of images show activities in which Atlas is not successful, such as carrying a dumbbell heavier than the force capacity of its new clamps. Another already known observation: the robot is not intelligent, and the route was previously programmed.

Evolution of Atlas robot movements

According to the company, with the updated accessories, the humanoid robot “exceeds the limits of locomotion, detection and athletic ability” of older versions – which are still equally impressive.

It’s worth remembering that, in 2021, Atlas viralized in a video where he did parkour. In the images, you can see the bipedal robot perform difficult maneuvers, including jumps, as it navigates a complex obstacle course. In the sequence of movements, there is even a “somersault”.

While parkour is fun, carrying objects with your “hands” is even more complex. This is because the machine needs to calculate the ideal force so that the item does not shatter (too tight) and that it does not fall (too loose). In addition, Atlas needs to maintain the same precision when walking with the object and, for example, when climbing stairs or jumping. This ability makes it even more special.

To understand what the backstage of this recording was like, check out the making of video, in English: