Disney Creates Robots That Can Play Throw And Catch With Park Visitors For A More Interactive Experience

November 27, 2012


"He just said he was going to kill me."

Disney has been developing a humanoid robot that can play throw and catch with human participants in an effort to make the animatronics in their parks more interactive. Personally, I already think they're interactive enough (I yell at them and they take it). Per the mouse himself:

Entertainment robots in theme park environments typically do not allow for physical interaction and contact with guests. However, catching and throwing back objects is one form of physical engagement that still maintains a safe distance between the robot and participants. Using a theme park type animatronic humanoid robot, we developed a test bed for a throwing and catching game scenario. We use an external camera system (ASUS Xtion PRO LIVE) to locate balls and a Kalman filter to predict ball destination and timing. The robot's hand and joint-space are calibrated to the vision coordinate system using a least-squares technique, such that the hand can be positioned to the predicted location. Successful catches are thrown back two and a half meters forward to the participant, and missed catches are detected to trigger suitable animations that indicate failure.

Did anybody read that? I'll give you $1 if you did. But only if you read it before you read this -- no retroactive reading. This post will self destruct in five seconds. Five...four...three...two...I was just kidding, we don't have that technology yet. Or to wipe out boogers. "It's called Kleenex." I meant when they're still IN the nose. I tried fire but that was a no-go.

Hit the jump for the video.

Thanks to Rampage the Mighty, who at first I thought was a call to action to destroy the mighty, but then realized is probably just some badass named Rampage. Either way, it's still a cooler name than Pacify the Limppeen.

  • Emmitt Morgans

    Well, it's good to know that the Kinect camera works... when it's NOT attached to a 360...

  • ZomBBombeR

    I guess I'm the only one bugged out by 'ole Pedo-bots face over there, I don't like the way he's eyeing that child.

  • Someon

    He's Robbie Rotten from LazyTown... http://lazytownpoint.com/im...

  • I read it. Gimme my $. Pm me on facebook with your bitcoin account.

  • BillGatesIsYourDaddy

    show someone unloading a 100+mph fast ball at ol' Johnny Bench here and let's see the outcome.

  • randomitems

    Didn't we learn anything from the incident at Itchy & Scratchy Land?

  • Totally gonna turn into a 'Westworld' situation..

  • jimmy

    I've always wondered what Daisy Duck throwing ninja starts looked like...

  • Burn it before it and Mickey take over

  • Wooly Alot

    I bet you $1 you don't have that $1 bet backed up.

  • Wooly Alot

    And I'll bet you $1 they'll have in-nose-booger-removal tech figured out before you back up your $1 bets.

  • RDarker

    Until it chuck a ninja star...Shit is using an Kinect to see you. That's crazy. Wonder how many goes before it has to be calibrated and beans you with the ball.

  • Marcus Como

    Anyone else notice in the first pic it's got the trollface?


  • Rampage the Mighty

    Just wait til they start giving them knives and set them loose on all the unsuspecting visitors of the theme park!

  • Sigmund Smudge

    I'm surprised they didn't make it look like Johnny Depp.

  • sandul

    looks like they're going to replace actors in the new star wars film, just robots and CGI!

  • Hayley Prychun Rodgers

    So better actors then ep. 1-3?

  • sandul


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