60 Responses to “Boston Dynamics unveils brick-hurling robot monster”

  1. oasisob1 says:

    Absolute worst weaponization of a robot, ever.

    • Michael Rosefield says:

      Altering the environment and getting through obstructions merely makes their other weapons that much more formidable!

    • Sigmund_Jung says:

      But I do see a future in a new Olympic sport.

    • simonbarsinister says:

      Boston Dynamics is starting with a rock throwing robot, and on the planning board it will soon be followed by a club wielding robot, then a spear throwing robot, a sword swinging robot, an arrow shooting robot, then an armored horse riding javelin holding robot, then a gun shooting robot, a jet-fighter pilot robot, and finally a tank robot. These things must follow a natural progression.

      • Boundegar says:

        Cool!  Like Civilization IV!  Can they build the Great Lighthouse too?

      • oasisob1 says:

        I think the final robot will build a four-legged robot with a throwing arm.

      • Preston Sturges says:

         And eventually a robot that will sit in meetings consuming coffee and donuts.  Then the circle shall be complete.

        • simonbarsinister says:

           One day in the far future: Robots sitting around a board room discussing a chart propped up on the table end:

          C5P9: “And you see, gentlebots, this new model is able to carry supplies and manipulate weapons.”
          R10D10: “Amazing. And what about cost? Is it expensive?”
          C5P9: “That is the beauty of it. It is self-replicating. Just put two of them together in the proper configurations and they will generate a new one. No factory, no assembly. They just keep making new ones in the field.”
          R10D10: “But what about power? Something like that must require tremendous batteries or fuel cells, right?”
          C5P9: “Nope. No batteries at all. It can convert organics into fuel on demand in the field!”
          R10D10: “This will revolutionize warfare! What are we calling it?”
          C5P9: “We call it BigApe”

  2. John Aspinall says:

    I, for one, welcome our new ballistic construction material wielding overlords.

    Someone had to say it.

  3. I’ve seen it all before… first come the “oohs!” and the “ahs!”, and later comes the screaming and the running…

    Inevitably, it will all end in tears.

  4. Napkins says:

    But I needed that brick!

  5. Felton / Moderator says:

    That’s going to put a lot of brick hurlers out of their jobs.

  6. Luther Blissett says:

    Why do these designs always remember me of HalfLife creatures?

  7. BookGuy says:

    It’s just practicing for its chance for revenge against the guy who kicked it in an earlier video:


  8. Spleenal says:

    … so solving all those “there’s no brick throwing robots” problems we used to have to live with.

  9. You call that building a wall?  Bad robot! No biscuit. err no oil change?


  11. Sylvia says:

    That’s awesome. I wonder how precise its aim is. It’s a prototype, it’s not for use in the field yet – it’s just showing that they have the ability to build a robot that can maintain balance all throughout the many changes to its center of gravity from the movement of that heavy thing.

  12. oasisob1 says:

    Sure, I suppose it COULD be used to clear debris and rubble in a search and rescue environment, but if that were the case, would it need to actually throw the bricks, or just pick them up and put them down somewhere else? This is a weapon. A crappy one, but a weapon.

  13. Forrest O. says:

    I’d be impressed if there were another one catching them.

  14. gws says:

    Well, this looks useful.

  15. DeeZed says:

    Definitely useful for clearing obstructions for a squad or for rescuing a trapped soldier.

  16. It´s practising for the Future Robot Intifadah!
    Robomules will down drones hurling stones!

  17. welcomeabored says:

    It can hurl bricks and Riverdance at the same time.  Take that, Michael Flatley!

    The ‘monster’ looks more like a pack mule, which I think is the army’s official mascot.

  18. fnc says:

    Finally, we’ve wedded the stubbornness of mules with the strength of elephants.  What could possibly go wrong?

  19. dave3 says:

    I’d like to see a video where this robot teams up with that panda that throws everything off the office desk.

  20. SamSam says:

    Hmmm… so they’ve invented a catapult. I’m sure the Romans would have been quite impressed.

    …I kid, of course. To all those who were thinking along the same sarcastic lines I was (i.e. all the comments above), what’s key here is that this is a quadruped robot that can lift up a large heavy weight, swing that weight around, and release it, all while maintaining its balance. Yes, a tractor can do that as well, after a fashion, but a tractor weighs many times more than this. If the robot weren’t dynamically adapting its stance constantly, it would tip over.

    This is more a test of the stabilization and versatility of the robot than a move towards replacing armies with brick throwers.

  21. Jimbo2K7 says:

    Ignatz? Is that you?

  22. finley says:

    Back in the 1990s, Survival Research Labs made a wonderful machine that launches six-foot-long 2″ x 4″s up to 800 feet. It is officially called the Pitching Machine but nicknamed the Lumbershooter:


  23. My good buddy works at BD as an EE.  He’s totally cool about building skynet.

    • bkad says:

      I think youtube videos like this are some of the most effective recruitment videos I’ve seen. Who wouldn’t want to work on things like that?

  24. Preston Sturges says:

     Great, a robot that can chase you down and use a terrifying metal claw to rip your nuts off.

    • Brainspore says:

      It’s about one-millionth as dangerous as those remote-controlled military robots that have treads and guns attached, but somehow this one just seems creepier.

  25. timquinn says:

    Are we really going to stand here and watch it get better?

  26. rvernon says:

    Yesssss….  Throwing the dead bodies of the enemy out of the way so we can proceed with the death march.  Conan’s statement about what is best in life needs a slight modification:

    Crush your enemies
    Have them THROWN around you
    And to hear the lamentation of their women

  27. Preston Sturges says:

     Wow. for once nobody wants to have sex with it.

  28. lavardera says:

    Anybody else worried that this beasty is throwing concrete blocks OVER ITS SHOULDER – at who? US, the good guys following it. 

  29. Bradley Robinson says:

    A brick throwing robot and an oreo de-icing gizmo.

    A great week for machinery.

  30. mindfu says:

    It’s like they want us all to die horribly.

  31. Michael Polo says:

    Judging from how their earlier robots were self-balancing, I’m sure this one would be independently figuring out how to fling any weight and shape object without flipping itself over in the process. 

  32. Maneki Nico says:

    Oh man, if they ever reboot Robot Wars, it is going to be AWESOME! 

  33. Tsv1138 says:

    Go home scientists, you are drunk.*

    (*drunkenness implied from both being in Boston, and the belligerent brick wielding robot)

  34. baronkarza says:

    Now they just need to build smaller and more deadly robots for this one to throw… Fastball Special!!!

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