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Robots Can Do Parkour Now

And sometimes they’re very bad at it.

The robotics company Boston Dynamics love to release videos of robots doing things you didn’t think robots could do. They popped out a new video on Tuesday and this time they had robots doing parkour.

Boston Dynamics keep insisting that building robots that can run and jump and climb is a good idea for the future. Their freaky humanoid robots are called Atlas and in the latest video they run around a gym completing an obstacle course.

When watching the video try not think about what sort of implications this sort of ability might have for any kind of future robot wars. These robots run along a balance beam, they jump gaps, they run up stairs, they climb over things, they even do BACKFLIPS DOWN STAIRS! They’re doing things that would leave actual humans crumpled in a heap.

In order to succeed at something like that the robots also have had to fail. And that leads to one of the few remaining moments we get to feel superior to these creatures as we watch them miss the mark and fall flat on their robot faces.

This is the exact sort of video that would make a perfect addition to the robot version of Funniest Home Videos. With falls like that those robots could win their very own home entertainment set from JVC.

Through failure is how these robots learn – they simply pick themselves up and have another go, and eventually they nail the course; backflips and all. Please Boston Dynamics, this is all great stuff, but whatever you do, don’t teach these robots how to build other robots because then we’re really done for.