February 24, 2016   |   Jake Anderson
February 24, 2016
(ANTIMEDIA) Recently, Anti-Media reported on new economic forecasts that predict robots and machine automation could replace 50 percent of the American workforce within two decades. Specifically, at least one major bank, Forbes, and legions of economists expect America to lose somewhere around 80 million jobs as artificial intelligence and advanced robotics make it financially lucrative for corporations to outsource labor to technology.
It seems that Google-owned Boston Dynamics may now be able to put a face to the future automated fleecing of America. This week the company fed the Terminator-inspired nightmares of people all over the world by releasing a video of Atlas, its new humanoid robot, which is seen completing menial factory tasks and traversing landscapes with ease.
The 5’9” 180-lb job killer is electrically powered, hydraulically activated, and designed for mobile manipulation. Boston Dynamics equipped Atlas with sensors in its body and legs to help with balance. Additionally, Atlas has LIDAR and stereo sensors in its head to assist with avoiding obstacles, assessing terrain, navigating, and manipulating objects, such as the 10lb (4.5kg) box it can proudly lift.
Only a few years ago, Atlas weighed 330 lbs. Boston Dynamics’ “next generation” fleet has undergone considerable weight loss and dexterity improvement.
Unfortunately, as the new kid on the block, the robot must still overcome workplace adversity. In one video that almost feels like undercover PETA footage from the future, workers are seen prodding Atlas with a hockey stick, even shoving it to the floor.
One can only hope the robot is not recording these early tests. If it is capable of remembering its early abuse, advanced AI descendants may someday file a costly robot rights lawsuit or, worse, just hack into the world’s defense system and launch all our nuclear weapons at once.
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