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Firm unveils 'robot dog' that does the dishes

By Ben Hooper
Firm unveils 'robot dog' that does the dishes
Boston Dynamics' SpotMini robot shows off its capabilities by loading a dishwasher. Screenshot: Boston Dynamics/YouTube

BOSTON, June 24 (UPI) -- Google-owned robotics firm Boston Dynamics revealed its latest robot creation with a video showing the dog-like machine performing household chores.

Boston Dynamics posted a video to YouTube introducing the world to SpotMini, a smaller version of its famous "robot dog" Spot.

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The firm said SpotMini is fully electric, forgoing the hydraulics used in its larger counterparts to make the new robot more suited for use inside a home.

"You wouldn't want to drip hydraulic oil on your carpet," Jerry Pratt, a senior research scientist at the Institute for Human & Machine Cognition, told CNN.

The video shows SpotMini maneuvering around a home setting, including ducking down to walk underneath a dining room table.

The robot shows off the capabilities of its robotic arm by showing how the arm's claw hand can remain still while the rest of the robot's body moves around.

SpotMini is shown using its arm to load a dishwasher, recycle an empty aluminum can and get back onto its feet after slipping on some banana peels.

"SpotMini is one of the quietest robots we have ever built. It has a variety of sensors, including depth cameras, a solid state gyro (IMU) and proprioception sensors in the limbs. These sensors help with navigation and mobile manipulation. SpotMini performs some tasks autonomously, but often uses a human for high-level guidance," the video's description reads.

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