Boston Dynamics, Five Other Companies, Pledge Not To Weaponize Robots

Fear not ... the plot of the "Terminator" movies won't be a reality anytime soon. Or, if it is, at least Boston Dynamics won't be involved. 

Boston Dynamics, the makers of the Atlas series of humanoid robots and the robot dog, Spot, wants its robots to help humanity by providing robots for not only search and rescue missions but automated machines for construction sites or manufacturing facilities. Earlier this year, a Boston Dynamics robot by the name of Stretch started helping out in a DHL warehouse. The company is hoping its products to make human's lives safer and easier. 

As videos have proven, Boston Dynamics robots are seriously capable machines, and, in general, can be used for altruistic purposes. Weaponized applications are decidedly not part of Boston Dynamics' game plan for a robot-filled future. As such, the company put out an open letter to the entire robotics industry vowing not to equip its robots with weapons or use its products in an offensive role. Five other robot makers signed the letter.

A peaceful robotic future

Agility Robotics, ANYBotics, Clearpath Robotics, Open Robotics, and Unitree all signed the letter, written by Boston Dynamics, promising to never weaponize the robots it produces. The companies also wanted make sure none of their customers raise an army of evil robots, stating: "When possible, we will carefully review our customers' intended applications to avoid potential weaponization. We also pledge to explore the development of technological features that could mitigate or reduce these risks."

That should put to rest some fears of seeing an Atlas robot being trained to handle an assault rifle or a phased plasma rifle in the 40-watt range ... at least for now. The letter also makes a call to government bodies and lawmakers to draft legislation that will prevent the weaponization of robots by any company in the future. The company is still hopeful for a future where robots are helpful and a net positive for humanity — that is until SkyNet gets involved.