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Prophecy:The Pentagon and Terminator ATLAS

Friday, August 02, 2013

(Credit: Screenshot by Christopher MacManus/CNET)

New humanoid robots will compete in a contest designed to test the ability of machines to take on extremely dangerous and high-stakes human jobs

Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which is known as “the Pentagon’s science agency,” is the organization that is stated to have invented the internet was now innovating a "human robot" called ATLAS.
DARPA was working with Massachusetts company called Boston Dynamics.

ATLAS Features & Capability

  • 6 feet / 1.8 meters
  • 330 pound / 150 kilogram
  • 28 degrees of freedom enabled by powerful hydraulically driven joints that allow it to not only carry heavy bjects but adjust with remarkable speed to loss of balance
  • robot’s head includes a laser-ranging instrument called a lidar that provides it with a detailed 3-D map of its surroundings.
  • it has two pairs of slightly different robotic hands
  • The robot currently requires a tether that feeds it cooling water and high-voltage power, but the goal is to develop an untethered version in 2014.
  • Atlas performed robotic calisthenics designed to demonstrate its flexibility
  • This robot was made to be able to cope with various types of terrain, from muddy fields, forests, deserts and others.
  • “In extremely challenging terrain, ATLAS is strong and coordinated enough to climb using hands and feet, to pick its way through congested spaces,” Boston Dynamics said.
  • To show off the capabilities of robots, DARPA has just released a video. In the video, ATLAS robot is shown performing various movements, from running to avoid some obstacles.

Team behind ATLAS

Teams from academia and industry are competing in two groups: one involved in designing and building robots for such missions; another engaged in developing the control software for rescue robots. The seven teams competing in the latter track will each be loaned an Atlas by DARPA to perfect their code.

ATLAS is designed to be a hero of humanities

"One of DARPA's goals for the challenge is to catalyse robotics development across all fields, so that we as a community end up with more capable, more affordable robots that are easier to operate," Gill Pratt, DARPA program manager for the DRC, said in a release. "The value of a cloud-based simulator is that it gives talent from any location a common space to train, design, test and collaborate on ideas, without the need for expensive hardware and prototyping. That opens the door to innovation."

From DARPA Robotics Challenge; The goal of the competition is for teams to develop the best robot hardware and software that can traverse dangerous environments, and aid humans in disaster-response scenarios.

In fact, Atlas is designed to eventually take on some of the most dangerous and high-stakes jobs imaginable, such as tending to a nuclear reactor during a meltdown, shutting off a deep-water oil spill, or helping to put out a raging wildfire. And if Atlas proves itself at such daredevil tasks, then one of its descendants might one day be allowed to do something just as important: help take care of the elderly and infirm.

Boston Dynamics and DARPA have provided several copies of the ATLAS robot to this year’s VRC competitors in hopes of seeing who can put the best set of brains inside the hunk of metal. Competitors this year include the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, TRACLabs Inc, Caltech’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Virginia Tech and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Despite the fact that Atlas bears a more-than-passing resemblance to an early Terminator prototype, DARPA insists that the robot is not designed for “adversarial” military tasks, and is intended only for humanitarian missions. The agency notes that its Robotics Challenge was inspired by the Fukushima nuclear accident in 2011, when human workers struggled to control a nuclear plant severely damaged by an earthquake and tsunami.

DARPA did, in fact, send a handful of wheeled robots to the Fukushima plant, but these were unable to cope with obstacles such as rubble on the ground, or to perform the complex tasks needed. “We were tearing our hair out trying to help, and the truth is there was very little we could do,” DARPA program manager Gill Pratt said at Thursday’s unveiling.

“It’s an extraordinary machine,” said Seth Teller, a professor at MIT who, along with colleague Russ Tedrake, leads one of the groups selected to receive an Atlas. “They’ve done a fantastic job on these machines; it’s been a real pleasure to see and touch and use the real hardware.”
The teams given Atlas robots will have to develop control software that will allow human controllers to operate the robots despite significant time delays—a constraint designed to mimic the challenge of operating from through the walls of a crumbling nuclear plant, or at a far-flung distance. The strategy adopted by Teller’s team involves having the human operator break each high-level mission into a series of smaller tasks, and guide the robot through a performance of each task. “Existing teleoperation systems impose too much cognitive load on the operator. One major aspect of the DARPA challenge is finding a way of commanding these robots that reduces that burden,” Teller said.
Asked what kinds of innovations Atlas could inspire beyond emergency work, he said humanoid robots could perhaps one day find a job in health care. “I know this robot looks big, and I know it weighs 300 pounds, but the number-one use for machines of this type is going to be in home care and health care,” he said.


ATLAS may used for depopulation project of Illuminati Group. This is not for helping the humanities but to reduce the number of people into 90% and 10% was live.  

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