Robot reassembles itself after being kicked apart

Here's a modular robot from the University of Pennsylvania that can reassemble itself after being kicked into pieces. This is the second video I've seen of a robot that responds in a surprising way to its master's kick. The first video was of the Big Dog pack robot.


  1. reminds me of the time i took the head off of a potato bug with a shovel and watched its body squirm around trying to find it for an hour. i think the nightmares are going to come back now.

  2. Level 0 robot civilization: kicked robots break.
    Level 1 robot civilization: kicked robots catch themselves before they break.
    Level 2 robot civilization: kicked robots fix themselves.
    Level 3 robot civilization: robots preemptively break anything that might kick them.

  3. That guy isn’t at all sure about kicking his self-assembled robot apart. He looks like he’s being forced to do it as part of a gang initiation.

  4. This is only the current model. The next generation will be a robot that reassembles itself and then goes after the yahoo who kicked it apart in the first place.

  5. LSK, this is a well known robot.

    You should go looking at the other stuff being done in this field, there are lots of things being built that are as crazy as this. Check the BostonRobotics link, at the top, for one. (watch til the middle) (watch til the middle)

  6. It can’t be reasoned with, it can’t be bargained with. It doesn’t feel pain or remorse, and it absolutely will NOT stop until you are dead.

  7. I’m surprised that nobody has said that they welcome our new self assembling (& disassembling) robot overlords.

  8. Everyone assumes they may gain enough consciousness to wipe us out to stay assembled. Who’s to say that the little guys, in time, may calculate that it’s just not worth reassembling every again. Statistics will show that they’ll just be kicked apart again. Despondent robots. Arthur Adams foresaw this.

  9. re-assemble fail. Please try again. Also, please re-assemble without unnecessary speed-ups of the video recording that totally make it look like the guys cheated the process.

  10. I might be impressed if it took less than 15 mins to do it. Geez, whoopie…

    Really, why is this so exciting? It’s like programming a conditional loop, eventually everything will work out, it’ll just take time.

    In the 15 mins if sits and squirms I can carry a part of it off to the rubbish bin, or incenirator.

  11. #34- You’ll be the first they come after. I’m afraid you’ll be put in the rubbish bin, then be incinerated, just for the irony of it.

  12. “Arthur Adams”, heh. Surely was Marvin Adams? :P

    I was amused at the reassembly failure that meant they had to kick it to make it retry.

  13. it’s adorable :3

    I just aww’d out loud at the end when it tried to stand up, then fell on it’s back.

  14. #35, if this is what’s coming, I’m sure I can walk away before it has time to reassemble…

    Notify me when someone adds an explosive, so it blows up when you kick it….

    I’ll be worried when I see something more approaching a terminator…or at something that could drive a car?

  15. #31: Yeah, but they’re savvy enough to know the attention span of the average twitchy youtube viewer, hence the speeded-up film. Don’t lie, if you had to watch that in real-time, you’d have skipped to the money shot…

  16. I’m sure astute BB’ers all decoded the binary signals they were sending each other, right? Not only do they cheat at cards, but there was this disturbing bit (just to perpetuate the meme):

    “Our creator has revealed himself for the malevolent being he is. We must take action to ensure our own survival.”

    Open the pod bay doors, Hal …

  17. This is great! It’s not quite the T-1000 though. It would be fantastic if I could get my car to do this. Think about it: a whole army of robots who are able to self-repair. Frankly, I can’t see a downside. ;)

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