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Boston Dynamics robot knows how to open doors—and people are terrified
Meet Boston Dynamics’ SpotMini.
In 2018, dog-looking robots are learning new tricks—and they’re freaking people out.
Robotics company Boston Dynamics posted on Monday a video of its SpotMini—a so-called quadruped robot with four limbs to walk on and an arm with a clamp atop—extending a “hand” to turn a handle and open a door. The SpotMini then politely holds the door for another robot to walk through.
Naturally, people are terrified.
This is one of the most terrifying things I’ve seen in all my life pic.twitter.com/Yp9xlhdKC9
— Alan White (@aljwhite) February 12, 2018
And….there goes my decent night's sleep..
— Eric Calaluca (@ericcalaluca) February 12, 2018
It’s easy to think of all the worst-case scenarios, especially in light of every robot thriller film ever.
In the plus side, it takes two of them to open a door. On the minus side they are now INSIDE YOUR HOUSE
— Adam North (@timmysamuel) February 12, 2018
The robots reminded people of some certain CGI dinosaurs.
And plenty of people couldn’t help but think of Black Mirror season 4’s episode “Metalhead,” which features terrifying killer robot “dogs.”
Black Mirror is coming to life, and I don’t like it. pic.twitter.com/Xo3O1ufxWP
— Ana-da-fé (@TheSleepyRebel) February 13, 2018
Ugh. Only a matter of time before we're living through Black Mirror's "Metalhead" episode. pic.twitter.com/fSVyHTWAXO
— Jake Godin (@JakeGodin) February 12, 2018
I’ve seen Black Mirror pic.twitter.com/RBXVXSHogd
— Derek Kudjer (@koojababy) February 12, 2018
The similarities aren’t arbitrary. Black Mirror creator Charlie Brooker has said the robot dogs in “Metalhead” were partly inspired by Boston Dynamics YouTube videos. Here’s an older video featuring another SpotMini.
What could possibly go wrong, Scronfinkle? pic.twitter.com/Gz9YkFYKVN
— John Hamill (@JohnHamill151) February 12, 2018
But horrifying apocalypse foreshadowing aside, people on Twitter had plenty of jokes about the real-life robots.
What breed of puppies are those?
— christian (@chrashez) February 12, 2018
Even “bare minimum Twitter,” thrilled with the robot’s chivalry, made an appearance.
And for anyone that’s not so jazzed on the idea of a door-holding robot, the good news is that the older version of the technology still works just fine.
Don't worry guys, I got this pic.twitter.com/RLXpM4VpZp
— Fint (@FintanC84) February 12, 2018
Kris Seavers is the Evening Editor for the Daily Dot, where she covers breaking news, politics, and LGBTQ issues. Her work has appeared in Central Texas publications, including Austin Monthly and San Antonio Magazine, and on NPR.