Sounds like there’s a new man’s best friend in town
It’s been a few years since Boston Dynamics launched their Spot Quadrupled robot but the price of the robot puts it out of everyone’s reach. But there’s some good news for you as now you will be able to afford a mini version of the robot dog, a Mini Pupper if you will.
Mini Pupper is an invention by the Hong-Kong-based startup MangDang which measures around 209mm in length, 109mm in width and has a height of 165mm and weighs only 560 grams. The best part about the robot? It’s available as an open-source kit so users and hackers alike can assemble the robot themselves and add in some personalized features if they want. There’s a fully-assembled option as well if you’re not really a tinkerer.
The mini robot can be programmed manually as well as controlled in real-time and is integrated with Raspberry Pi 4B microprocessor which is compatible with Ubuntu and ROS operating systems. It can also be equipped with third-party devices such as LiDAR module for scanning and mapping its surroundings and a depth-sensing camera for identifying and tracking objects (this is exactly how that one Black Mirror episode “Metalhead” started FYI) *chuckles I’m in danger* But don’t worry it also has an animated LCD screen for a face so you can program it to display cute expressions and feel less threatened by its presence.
When it comes to agility, there’s no stopping the Mini Pupper as it can walk, pace, bound, and trot along thanks to its 12-degrees of freedom agility and a 30-minute charge of 800-mAh battery can make it run for 25 minutes.
The Kickstarter campaign for the Mini Pupper is ongoing right now with a discount available for backers who are willing to supply their own parts and assemble the robot themselves. Whereas a fully assembled unit including all the components can be backed for a pledge of $589 when it reaches production.