I’ll be the first to admit that I thought this was a tiny robot dance-off at first, but it’s actually the ROBO-ONE Championship – a humanoid-robot fighting competition that saw its tenth anniversary this year in Japan. The video shows the red-armed GAROO fighting off Gargoyle Mini to take the crown for a second year in a row, netting its female creator around £7,000 in prize money.
Whilst it’s not quite Skynet and these things seem more adorable than threatening, they are still pretty impressive. According to some robotics researchers I spoke to recently, as more advanced robotic technology moves from the factory floors into our homes, companies are putting a lot of work into making robots more agreeable to ease negative public reactions. Maybe if we just give Craig Charles a call and get GAROO and Gargoyle Mini on a new humanoid-version of Robot Wars they wouldn’t have to bother. They’ve certainly won me round.