AS THE HUMANS battle high winds at Pyeongchang, the Winter Olympics fringe has played host to a rather more sturdy, but less competent form of skiing. The robot uprising has come to winter sports, and dammit, it's a bit rubbish.
Welli Hilli Ski Resort, an hour away from the human sports, hosted an all-robot skiing competition and showed us that even if Spot can open doors now, all we'd need to do to prevent the robot apocalypse is to turn the heating down a bit.
The "Edge of Robot: Ski Robot Challenge" saw many participants suffer from frozen circuitry and pelt uncontrollably down the 80-metre course, or just fall over where they stood.
The competition was open to "humanoid" robots. In other words, they needed two legs for two skis, with two knees and two ankles.
The eventual winner, Taekwon V, made by MiniRobot Corp, was just 75cm tall, the minimum height allowable under the rules.
Of course, the key trick was not just to be able to stand on skis - that's probably easier for a robot than a human, but slalom skiing involves staying on a course, between the red and blue flags.
To enable this, the competitors needed to be able to "see" and react to the course by shifting weight and using the ski poles. As you can see in the video below, Taekwon V, named after a Korean children's character, does not have sophisticated vision like that of self-driving cars but is able to register the red flag and the blue flag and stay between them.
Add a small child in the mix and it'd probably freak. Especially if the child was wearing a red hat.
If only Arnie had worn his Mr Freeze costume in Terminator, he could have avoided all this Skynet nonsense and we'd have been spared Terminator Genisys. µ
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