The Massachusetts Sapper Police Unit rented a Boston Dynamics Spot to use to remotely monitor suspicious and dangerous objects.
From April to November, the robot dog is not onlytrained and tested at the training ground, but also used in two real incidents. Although the details of the tests and the level of autonomy of the rented Spot were not disclosed, the police claim that they did not change the basic software and did not use it as a weapon.
Boston Dynamics also says law enforcement doesn't could arm robops even if they wanted tosince the company’s license prohibits the use of products for any purpose that could harm a person. Robots are leased, not sold, so that at any time they can terminate the contract in case of violation of its terms.
However, the American Union of Defensecivil liberties considered that the tests were not transparent enough, and pointed out the absence of real regulatory obstacles to the illegal use of robots.
In April, police revealed the prospects for Spot in their operations at TechCrunch, but did not inform the public about rental plans.
In addition to Boston Dynamics, engineers from Florida Atlantic University, who created the Astro robot dog, which can be trained, also made progress in developing smart robots.
text: Ilya Bauer, photo and video: Boston Dynamics / MA State Police / TechCrunch