Watch the big world of deformed robots walking around

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Of course, evolution was invented Mammals towering 200 feet in the air Huge skin flap And a 3 foot wide crab Tree climbing, But has it ever invented a quadruped with retractable limbs? No, it doesn’t. Biology really can’t work like that. But of course robots can.

Recognize the dynamic robot used for dynamic testing, also known as DyRET, which is capable of Change the length of the leg at any time-It is not to make humans squirm, but to help various types of robots not to fall.writing present day In the diary Natural machine intelligenceResearchers in Norway and Australia described how they let DyRET learn how to lengthen or shorten its limbs to cope with various terrains. Then, once they let the transforming robot relax in the real world, it can use the training to effectively step on surfaces it has never seen before. (That is, it manages not to crash in the heap.)

Tønnes Nygaard, a computer scientist at the University of Oslo and the first author of the paper, said: “We can actually take the robot outside and it will start to adapt.” “We see that it can use the knowledge it has learned before.”

Walking animals have no limbs to stretch, because first of all, this is biologically impossible. But this is not necessary. Due to millions of years of evolution, our bodies, humans, cheetahs and wolves all move with incredible agility, constantly scanning the obstacles ahead while running.

Go, gadgets, limbs…

Provided by the University of Oslo

On the other hand, the robot needs some help.Even super precision machines like Boston Dynamics Robot dog spot Having trouble navigating in complex terrain. Making the robot telescopic legs can not only improve their stability when moving on different surfaces, but also improve energy efficiency. Walking around consumes a lot of battery power, and the shaking of the robot may hurt yourself or people nearby. Francisco Valero-Cuevas, an engineer at the University of Southern California, said: “It is a particularly good idea to have an adjustable body.” People who develop quadruped robots But did not participate in this new study. “This is what is happening here. The adjustable body makes the robot more flexible.”

Nygaard and his colleagues first literally constructed an experimental sandbox, thus educating DyRET. In the laboratory, they filled long boxes with cement, gravel and sand, representing the various terrains that the robot might find in the real world. Concrete is easy to do-flat and predictable. Stepping into the sand is even more uncertain, because with each step, the robot’s legs will sink in a unique way. Gravel is a physically hard surface, just like concrete, but it is also unpredictable because the rock will move, complicating DyRET’s footsteps. Nygaard said: “Through three terrain examples with different hardness and roughness, you can well show the form or the general interaction between the body and the environment.”

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