Elon Musk unveils prototype of Optimus robot at the Tesla AI Day

  • Tesla hosted AI Day on Friday and unveiled a bot named Optimus or the Tesla bot. 
  • Elon Musk called the Optimus bot a friendly robot that upon full-fledged production can replace human labor. 
  • Although Musk debuted several prototypes, experts believe it won’t be able to be successful economically. 

Tesla hosts a marvelous event known as its AI(Artificial Intelligence) Day almost every year. This day is marked as a platform for unveiling new prototypes and other futuristic technologies by clean energy and automotive company.

The last AI day was hosted by the American company on August 19, 2021, and it saw a strange turn of events. Elon Musk, the founder of the company, announced that Tesla was going to build a humanoid robot.

And while back in 2021, Tesla didn’t have a hardware prototype to show for the claims made by Musk, the announcement was accompanied by an actor dressed in a white spandex bodysuit who appeared dancing on stage.

AI Day 2022: Unveiling of Optimus

This year, investors were expecting a real tech demonstration of the robot which was given the name of Optimus or the Tesla Bot.

The event which was live-streamed on Friday starting around 5:00 p.m. in California did not disappoint completely either. The world got a taste of the Optimus robot which debuted as a 5’8” tall male. He bears a carrying capacity of 45 pounds, can deadlift around 150 pounds, has a speed of around 5mph and weighs around 125 pounds.

Explaining the logic behind building Optimus, Musk explained that Tesla is arguably the world’s biggest robotics company since their cars are semi-sentient robots on wheels. Hence the showstopper of AI Day 2021 remained the star. 

During the unveiling, the back doors of the stage opened to reveal a deconstructed predecessor of Optimus called “Bumble C”. Afterward, the company showed a few video clips of the robot doing other tasks like picking up boxes.

Then Tesla’s team brought out another prototype showing an Optimus with its body fully assembled but not functional which waved to the audience. Musk claimed this unit “wasn’t quite ready to walk” and was wheeled in and out by a group of workers. 

Developing the Optimus

The presentation revealed that the Optimus contains a 2.3kWh battery and has Wi-Fi and LTE connectivity.

Demonstrations focused on addressing the robot’s joints and showed how they processed data for each joint. The human-like hands are a “Biologically Inspired Design” that engineers say will make them more suitable for picking up objects of various shapes and sizes.

Tesla motion captured people doing real-world tasks like lifting a box and then using inverse kinematics and then “online motion adaptation” is applied to allow Optimus to repeat the same.

Musk’s opinion

Musk feels that the development of Optimus will be a fundamental transformation for civilization as we know it. He believes that Optimus has the potential to improve the economic output as well.

Musk had warned his fans not to expect the prototype to look like the glossy black-and-white images first shown at last year’s event. Musk also called the robot “the most important product developed this year”.

Further discussing the future applications, Musk announced that Optimus would be developed to include cooking, gardening, or even “catgirl” sex partners.

However, In the days leading up to AI Day, robotics experts warned against buying too much into Musk’s claims. Tesla’s history is littered with fanciful ideas that never panned out like a solar-powered Supercharger network and battery swapping.

So whether this Tesla Bot will ever see the light of day is debatable. Most experts believe that maybe Musk will be successful in introducing the bot to the market however it won’t be able to completely replace human labor.

Disclaimer: This information is covered based on the latest research and development available. However, it may not fully reflect all current aspects of the subject matter.

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