By now, we all know who Elon Musk is: entrepreneur, SpaceX and Tesla CEO, and serial tweeter (with a potential breeding kink). Despite what people may think of him, his innovations have always been groundbreaking, with Tesla cars making headlines quite frequently—although not always for the best reasons.
However Tesla’s latest product might just capture your interest. Introducing Optimus, the new humanoid AI-powered robot that could one day make you dinner, mow your lawn and even care for the elderly.
The space billionaire is set to reveal the highly-anticipated robot at Tesla’s annual AI day on 30 September 2022. As you may have guessed, the creation received its namesake from the leader of the exceedingly-intelligent race of alien robots from the popular cartoon Transformers—a fitting name for a being of such advanced capabilities.
In a recent TED Talk, Musk claimed that productions could start as early as next year. He also stated that apart from caring for the elderly, Optimus would even have the capacity to become “buddies” with you, or even a “catgirl” sex partner. Really, Elon?
Despite all the big talk from the Tesla CEO, it remains to be seen if the company will actually be able to innovate the technological advances needed to justify the manufacturing of the “general purpose” robots for factories, homes and elsewhere, according to robotics experts, investors and analysts.
All that said, Tesla has already created hundreds of robots that are designed for specific jobs undertaken during the production of its cars, and so the notion that it can produce an AI competent enough to replace complex human roles isn’t completely out of the picture.
After all, humanoid robots have been in development for decades spearheaded by companies such as Honda and Hyundai’s Boston Dynamics unit. For now however, like self-driving cars, they have trouble with unpredictable situations. Heck, even dead spiders are being used to make robots in 2022. Creepy.
According to Nancy Cooke, a professor in human systems engineering at Arizona State University, for Optimus to succeed, Musk will have to showcase it performing multiple unscripted actions. “If he just gets the robot to walk around, or he gets the robots to dance, that’s already been done. That’s not that impressive,” the expert stated.
I guess we’ll just have to wait and see if the SpaceX director can prove all of the haters wrong and produce the most intelligent and capable AI robot yet. We’re waiting, Mr. Musk…