Robot Footballer Needs a Better Goal Celebration

By Nick Cowen on at

One day the machines will rise against us. One day, when humankind's reach out-distances its grasp, the appliances, robots and AIs we've created will hound us across creation and then only John Connor and his rag-tag band of resistance fighters will be able to save us.

That day, however, seems to be quite a ways off, since the current generation of robots doesn't seem to be able to dive in a penalty area convincingly...

While the members of the University of Newcastle's Robot Football team are admittedly adorable - and have apparently won the World Cup for Robot Football (yes there is such a thing: The RoboCup) many times - their antics in the penalty area would have Diego Maradona wincing. Witness below:


However, this flailing about is apparently all in the aid of a good cause. According to Mashable, these mechanical bi-pedal footie stars of the future help their creators and researchers work out a lot about how the human body works. Not only that, the AI that's been developed for the miniature Pele's has potentially a ton of applications ranging from automotive software to emotional AI. There's even the possibility these tykes could be used as companions for the aged.

Associate Professor in Computer Science and Software Engineering at the Newcastle Robotics Laboratory, Stephan Chalup, says that the aim with the team - which has been in existence since about 2002 - is to have human-sized robots making up the numbers by 2050. So that's apparently when Skynet will make its move. Possibly during the next RoboCup. At half-time. [Mashable]