Home / Computers/technology / News / Video: This Robot's Moves Might Be Better Than Your Worst Dance Moves


Date: 2018-03-13

Video: This Robot

AI might doom the planet one day, and no matter how many times Elon Musk still warns us that it might take over the world, there are some robots out there that are just trying to get their groove on.

The recent video above of quadruped research bot ANYmal was recently taught to dance (sort of) by researchers at Swiss university ETH Zurich. Doctorate student, Péter Fankhauser, explains that the interesting thing here is that ANYmal is reacting to music it hears in real time, rather than relying on pre-programmed dance moves. This requires the robot to analyse the speed of the song, plan how it might move in time to the music, start dancing, and then check its own movements to see if they are synced to the beat.

“We wanted to have it so if you bring the robot to a disco, it can figure out the music, create a choreography, and sync up its motion,” says Fankhauser. “We’re also interested in creating lifelike movements. Dancing is a very human and motion-intensive action, so it’s challenging to mimic.”

The mechanism by which ANYmal analyses its own movements to check that it's dancing in time with the beat is a useful feedback loop.

“We do a lot of serious things with the robot, but this is the fun side,” says Fankhauser. “For us, for students, for everybody involved, it’s enjoyable to do these things, and really explore the capabilities of the hardware.”

Be sure to check out the video below.

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