The latest demonstration of Aldebaran Robotics' Nao robot shows 20 robots performing a 3-part synchronized dance, preparing for France’s Pavilion Day. The Nao robot, humanoid in design, showcases its great range of motion by deftly moving its numerous joints and appendages in an impressive mimicry of human movement.
While these robots might not win “So You Think You Can Dance?” any time soon, close inspection of their movements shows that Nao has 25 degrees of freedom. Particularly impressive are the moves requiring Nao to stand/sit. See the video after the jump.
The Nao robots have been around for since 2006, but are continuously being upgraded, and programmers are finding increasingly impressive ways to show off their abilities.
They are the standard model used in the RoboCup 2010’s Standard Platform League, a robotic soccer competition using only autonomous robots with no external control. Unlike other international soccer competitions, the US has actually won, with UT Austin taking the crown in 2009 (unfortunately the University of Bremen won this year). Alebaran Robotics’ Website shows some of Nao’s other features, including voice recognition in English and French, touch recognition, and face/shape recognition.
There’s something ominous about humanoid robots moving in synchronization, especially when the first 1/3 looks a bit similar to the New Zealand All Black’s haka dance. Still, I can’t help but be impressed--that is, until someone programs Nao to seek and destroy all humans.
Thankfully, the Nao isn’t available for public purchase quite yet, so the rest of us can sleep soundly.