Entertainment

Adam Savage pits Boston Dynamics robot dog against police training course

by Matt Porter

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Tech YouTuber and former Mythbuster's star Adam Savage finally got his hands on one of Boston Dynamics' incredible robot dogs, and put the amazing machine through a rigorous test by taking it to a course used to train Sheriffs in California to see what it's really capable of.

The robot, known as Spot, is one of the most impressive pieces of engineering in the world, with the machine able to walk, run, jump, carry heavy loads, and even open doors. On top of that, Spot can climb over obstacles, clamber over tough and rocky terrain, and even do backflips thanks to the incredible power in its legs.

If you really want to test the limits of a contraption though, who better to hand it off to than Adam Savage, who spent 14 seasons breaking down myths and creating crazy scenarios to push items to their limit. Now, the 52-year-old has gotten his hands on the company's dog, and he didn't waste any time in putting it through its paces to see what it can do.

Adam Savage standing outside with the Boston Dynamics robot dog.
YouTube: Adam Savage\'s Tested
Savage decided to put Spot to the test outdoors.

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After opening the massive crate inside his Tested studio, the American decided it was time to take Spot on an early adventure, jumping into the car and driving out to a Sheriff's training facility in California to give the robot a proper run-out. Things immediately got off to a rocky start literally when he tried to send the dog careering over a mound of rocks. Spot struggled, almost slipping off them entirely, but eventually clambered up and stood on the summit, much to the delight of Savage.

From there, the former Mythbusters host had Spot moving through tunnels, climbing stairs, and even make an attempt at crouching underneath a section of flat bars, with Spot eventually grinding to a temporary halt when the distance between the ground and the roof became too small.

Finally, it was time to take Spot into the great outdoors, sending the robotic canine for a run-up an incredibly steep hill after maneuvering over a pile of sandbags, with the Boston Dynamics creation having no issues as it reached the top and stood proudly beside its new master.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7s1sr4JdlI

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With the Software Development Kit now available to the public, owners are able to customize the robot and see what other tricks they can make it perform, with Boston Dynamics confirming that Savage will be working to "develop and deploy custom hardware and software" for Spot.

Based on his early time with the device though, it seems like Spot won't be living a life of luxury in the Tested studio with Savage.