We have seen the future, and it is not looking good for humanity.
The DARPA challenge was held over the weekend in California, and South Korea’s Team KAIST took home the $2 million dollar grand prize for a bipedal, shape-shifting robot with wheels on its knees named DRC HUBO.
HUBO beat out powerhouse robots straight from the labs of NASA, Lockheed Martin, MIT and, uh, Italy. HUBO and his robot buddies drove cars, climbed over rubble and up steps, unlocked doors and valves and deftly handled power tools.
Playboy.com saw 10 more reasons to lock your doors and pray for Sarah Connor’s kid to grow up fast. Actually, don’t bother locking your doors, these robots can cut through walls.
DARPA prepares human witnesses to the robot X Games by making them walk through a simulation of the Fukushima Disaster Zone. Welcome to the future!
AND YOUR ROBOT OVERLORD IS
Meet TROOPER, the Lockheed Martin Robot. TROOPER (AKA Leo) wins the prize for most likely to end up as a Police Force Robot. His blue exoskeleton, powerful thighs and terrifying billy-club hand means this guy is the “bad cop.”
WE HAVE COME FOR YOUR PETS
This TV surveillance camera collar fits snugly on your miserable canine friend. The robot revolution will be televised … by Lassie!
JUST WHEN YOU THOUGHT IT WAS SAFE
We’re sure a robot shark has only the friendliest of intentions. Good to see that Dr. Evil still has some pull in the world of defense contracting.
MANLY MAN ROBOTS
The 24 DARPA robots on hand could grasp, activate and operate a drill. They’re perfect for that honey-do list you have been meaning to get to.
MEET YOUR FUTURE UBER DRIVER
Robosimian is an ape-like robot designed by Jet Propulsion Laboratories for NASA. He can look out the passenger window of his car while his long arm operates the steering wheel. Hands at 10 and 2, Robosimian.
WE HAVE COME FOR YOUR CHILDREN
Indoctrination of human kids starts with a cute stuffed animal placed over a robots head.
Pneubotics are robots made out of compliant skins and pressurized fluids. This one is ready to beat the crap out of you. Yay, science!
NOW YOUR LOST LUGGAGE WILL FIND YOU
Jet Propulsion Laboratory created a briefcase that uses microwaves to search for human heartbeats in rubble. Actually, this could come in handy. Good one, Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
The perfect design of the spider has made the species incredibly successful. We are hoping scientists will not add wall-crawling, web-slinging and venom-spewing to the design of this robot.
IS THIS THE END?
For now, humans still need to assist robots on their quest for world domination. As impressive as the robots of DARPA are, they require a team of engineers to get them out of tight spots. This rescue robot needed its own rescue, on a stretcher no less.
A Compilation of Robots Falling Down at the DARPA Robotics Challenge
The good news is: we’re not totally screwed yet. Robots still have a long way to go, as evidenced by this video, which our robot masters will watch someday right before gleefully enslaving us all.