Hello Apocalypse! Boston Dynamics’ Robot Dog Acts A Lot Like Metalhead

Metalhead vs SpotMini

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Here at Post Apocalyptic Media, we’re not a bunch of Luddites who don’t want technological advancement. We love tech. But whether it’s blockchain via Facebook turning into Skynet or a cute robotic dog by Boston Dynamics called SpotMini, we feel it’s always important to share when science mimics art (and more importantly, post-apocalyptic art.) And now it’s happening again. Boston Dynamics’ SpotMini, a cute robotic dog soon-to-be on the market, reminds us just a bit of Black Mirror’s post-apocalyptic Metalhead. Maybe more than just a bit.

So, is Boston Dynamics is creating Metalhead? Black Mirror once again becoming reality. Share on X

Hey, we’re not saying you shouldn’t trust an autonomous robot that can open closed doors and fight off an armed human… We just like to point out a few comparisons because that’s our job. 🤷‍♀️

(This has some minor spoilers for Black Mirror’s Metalhead, but we definitely won’t be sharing the ending or major plot twists.)

First, let’s just get this straight. Metalhead is a post-apocalyptic world that has been taken over by four-legged killer robots sometimes referred to as dogs.

And Boston Dynamics’ dog is called SpotMini. Hmmm.

SpotMini can walk up and down stairs. He’s yellow and black and kinda cute.

We have no idea what the Metalhead dogs look like because it’s shot in black and white. But they can climb stairs. And they can open doors, just like SpotMini.

And they can fight against humans too. I guess the SpotMini is being taught to do that? You can decide for yourself below:

OK, a robotic dog isn’t a new idea. Heck, I had this cutie when it was popular. It was a lot of fun, and I’d used it to send messages to my colleagues in the cubicles next to me. It was great.


But this is a little different. This one seems to actually be trying to mimic the Metalhead robots. I’m not the first one to make this comparison, so here you go, a comparison video:

The robot will eventually be autonomous too. It first requires an operator to manually drive the robot around, but its cameras capture the surroundings and it eventually creates 3D maps of the routes with its robot brain, so it can operate by itself.

Anyway, if you want to help usher in the apocalypse (or if you just want a fascinating and very expensive robot dog, depending on your viewpoint), Boston Dynamics will be selling them soon. The SpotMini will go on sale in 2019. The company has 10 prototypes now and will build 100 this year. They’ll probably start out as security patrols, CNET guessed, or helping construction companies. But the company hopes they’ll eventually be a staple in people’s homes too.

    Stephanie Dwilson started Post Apocalyptic Media with her husband Derek. She's a licensed attorney and has a master's in science and technology journalism. You can reach her at [email protected].

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