Elon Musk has unveiled plans for Tesla to start building their own humanoid robots called ‘Tesla Bots’ and people are already fearing that it will end up like something from a sci-fi film.
Speaking at Tesla’s AI Day on Thursday night, Musk announced that his company plan to have a prototype of the robot by next year and that the aim is for the machine to do “work that is boring, repetitive and dangerous.”
Musk believes that physical work will become a choice for a human in the future and that a universal basic income will be needed as technology could completely eliminate some human jobs.
However, Musk stressed that this is not likely to become a reality for some time as the Tesla Bot isn’t ready yet. On an AI page on Tesla’s website, they list the goals for the robot as: “Develop the next generation of automation, including a general-purpose, bi-pedal, humanoid robot capable of performing tasks that are unsafe, repetitive or boring.”
Musk added that the machine could also do menial tasks. During his speech he said: “Can you talk to it and say, ‘please pick up that bolt and attach it to a car with that wrench,’ and it should be able to do that. Please go to the store and get me the following groceries.’ That kind of thing. I think we can do that.”
Now given Musk’s well-known obsession with science-fiction and pop culture, many people are already fearing that this could end up like a situation from I, Robot or The Terminator.
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However, Musk appears to have already thought of this as the robot will be only 5 ft. 8 in and weigh just 125-pounds. Although it will reportedly be able to deadlift 150 pounds and carry about 45 pounds it will only be able to move at 5 miles per hour.
“We’re setting it such that it is at a mechanical level, at a physical level, that you can run away from it and most likely overpower it. We hope this does not feature in a dystopian sci-fi movie,” the South African entrepreneur added.
You can watch the full presentation below.
Whether Musk and Tesla actually succeed in mass-producing these robots and rolling them out to the public remains to be seen but it’s another bold and slightly unnerving move from the billionaire.