Readers like you keep news free for everyone.

More than 5,000 readers have already pitched in to keep free access to The Journal.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can help keep paywalls away.

Support us today
Not now
Advertisement

Google buys military robotics firm Boston Dynamics

Boston Dynamics is known for developing animalistic robots that are both balanced and quick.

Image: BostonDynamics/YouTube

GOOGLE HAS PURCHASED an eighth company to help it build the next generation of robots.

Boston Dynamics, an engineering company famed for creating animalistic robots that are both balanced and quick, will now be involved in developing robotics at Google.

Some of its creations include the Cheetah, a robot that can run 45km/h, and Big Dog, a robot that can walk over rough terrain and keep its balance, even when knocked over.

The company has not sold robots commercially, instead working for US Pentagon clients like the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). Google has said that it will honour any existing military contracts, but it has no plans to move towards becoming a military contractor on its own.

The project is being headed by the former Android executive Andy Rubin. It’s expected that the company will market these robots towards manufacturing although it’s possible that they will also be used for retail purposes.

In a statement posted on Google+, Google’s CEO Larry Page said:

I am excited about Andy Rubin’s next project. His last big bet, Android, started off as a crazy idea that ended up putting a supercomputer in hundreds of millions of pockets. It is still very early days for this, but I can’t wait to see the progress.

Making a difference

A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article.

Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can make sure we can keep reliable, meaningful news open to everyone regardless of their ability to pay.

For those not familiar with its work, here’s one of its robots, the Wildcat, in action.

(Video: BostonDynamics/YouTube)

Read: Students develop robotic arm that could make you stronger >

Read: Watch: Failsafe tech keeps drone flying even when damaged >

About the author:

Quinton O'Reilly

Read next:

COMMENTS (22)