We’ve seen it time and time again in film and television -- The helpful robot goes haywire. For a robot in Washington DC, however, it was more like Short Circuit than Westworld. It drowned itself in a fountain.
Knightscope’s K5 robot has a 360-degree video camera array that can scan 1,500 license plates a minute, microphones for hearing gunshots, and even thermal imaging capabilities. However, it appears the robot is lacking an understanding of how steps work, after it fell into a pool of ankle-deep water.
Who knows what could’ve been for the K5. According to the Washington Post, it was just its first week on the job.
Social media is loving the mechanical mishap, and the comments are going viral. One Twitter user commented, “We were promised flying cars, instead we got suicidal robots.”
People also loved the fact that humans had to rescue the robot from the fountain -- Proof that human jobs are safe for a little while longer. You’ll always be able to apply for a position in robot rescue.
Knightscope said in a statement that the incident was under investigation, and called it "an isolated event". They’ve promised to deliver a new robot this week for free
So while Elon Musk calls for regulation of artificial intelligence and that AI is a “fundamental existential risk for human civilization,” the K5 incident shows mankind only needs to build stairs to protect itself. A least for now.
Watch the video to see how even robots can have a bad day at work.