WATCH: Our robot overlords will excel at ping-pong

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Yeah, this robot only plays ping pong, it just HAPPENS to look like a praying mantis/velociraptor.

Totally safe.


Hey, I have an idea. Why don’t these people get rid of the machine and play against one another? That would be way more fun.

or against a wall.

edit: Practically speaking though the trick to an AI sparing partner is not to make it good, that part is easy, it’s to make it lose in a convincing manner.

obligatory video:


Oh man, they really went in a different direction with the text than I thought they were going to.

I thought it was going to be about the single-minded focus of a robot player vs the humans.

I want…

  • Fulfilling work
  • Family time
  • A new dream
  • Greater confidence

[switch to robot]

I want

  • To destroy all human oponents

Why would anyone build a robot that looks like it is playing ping-pong using its prehensile genitalia?


That’s the scariest goddamn thing.

If it was in their power, who woul not?



I kept waiting for the action to ramp up and there to be an Olympic ping pong champion going mano a mano with the machine, but it was all softballs by people who clearly didn’t really play the sport. Lame.

Also, yeah, they could’ve made the robot a touch more warm and cuddly.


Waiting for video of this thing up against a copy of itself, cranked up to ludicrous speed. Hmm… are we at the point where we can actually have a robot deflecting bullets with a ping-pong paddle, or indeed, a sword?

It’s kind of interesting to see how far things come; this was actually the genesis of Computer Vision. Pretty sure I read it in Stephen Levy’s Hackers: one of the professors back in the 60’s assigned his students a “quick” summer project to build a robot that could play ping pong.

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If they can get it to smack mosquitoes out of the air, then my wife would likely order a few.

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