The next time you see someone doing the dance “The robot,” it might not be accurate in the world of modern robotics. Scientists at the University of Sussex, the University of Belgrade, and the Artificial Intelligence Lab of the University of Zurich have been working on a new humanoid robot that has muscles and joints, just like real humans. This means their movements won’t be as rigid as everyone has come to expect from robots.
It’s called the Eccerobot, and right now it is a half-torso that is positioned on a mobile platform. It has arms that can moves flexibly like a human, and they can detect muscular strain. Part of the goal is to better understand human movements and figure out how to more accurately represent the way people truly move. In the future, it could lead to robotic creations that are able to have more complex tasks.
Artificial Intelligence Laboratory scientist Hugo Gravato was quoted as saying, “You can use the passive compliance to make it absorb the energy in the right way to allow for safe interaction and to store energy in the muscles to produce fast movement.” The more human-like robots become, the more powerful the implications are for the future. Combine this with the advancements in artificial intelligence and computers that can render and understand human speech, and it’s a pretty exciting time.