Honda’s ASIMO Humanoid Robot Shows Signs of Evolution

The Japanese company’s humanoid robot proved recently that its behavior can be even closer to the ones of humans. ASIMO’s latest movement patterns are a clear sign of evolution, considering that the same robot could barely walk across a stage ten years ago.

Honda exhibited these days the latest version of ASIMO (Advanced Step in
Innovative Mobility), and there’s no doubt that the company is proud of the latest achievements of its engineers. The humanoid robot moves swiftly now, and it’s even ready for sports or dancing. The Japanese roboticists equipped the 4 feet tall, 115-pound robot with five dextrous fingers on each hand, and added force feedback sensors to the configuration.

While not exactly a vehicle, ASIMO is made by a company that is best known as an automaker, so it shouldn’t surprise anyone that Honda decided to showcase the latest version of its humanoid robot at International Auto Show in New York. Needless to say, the bipedal robot was quite the sensation at the show, as it demonstrated how good it is with its new hands. After carefully picking up a sealed box containing orange juice and unscrewing the cap, ASIMO proceeded to pouring juice in a paper cup. Right after that, it placed the box and the cup on the table, without spilling any juice from either. All this was achieved with the help of two camera eyes and the sensors in its hands.

Honda’s ASIMO also danced a bit like John Travolta (even though I’m not certain whether it was in the style of Vincent Vega from Pulp Fiction or Danny from Grease), went up and down a flight of stairs, kicked a football, jumped up and down like an excited kid, and shook hands of people.

The fluent moves and the great number of different patterns prove that ASIMO is just about ready to live among humans. In 2003, when Honda first exhibited him, engineers used to remote control him from the backstage. Now, it has pre-programmed task, and from here one, ASIMO can rely on his sensors to perform the rest of the tasks.

In terms of autonomy, ASIMO’s battery is not that great, as it can only keep the robot moving for 40 minutes, but there will definitely be some advancements in this field, as well. I wonder what Honda has in store for us in the future, considering how great this version of ASIMO really is.

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