Robotic advancements are being seen as a threat to the human aspect of things. Many experts think machines, which are built to be perfect, could one day replace humans in every field and take away all our jobs, but another optimistic group believes they would complement our lives.
Though the future is unpredictable, one thing is pretty much clear — machines are taking some giant leaps in all fields. We have already seen robots performing tasks like heavy weight lifting and high-precision surgeries and now, a new video shows a robot can even defeat professional basketball pros.
Inspired by the lead character of Suramu Danku, a basketball-based Japanese comic book, the engineers at the company developed “Cue” to execute perfect free throws. They improved the machine over years and finally challenged a group of professional basketball players for a one-on-one free shoots showdown.
In a game of back-to-back free throws, it is likely to miss at least one or twice, something the basketball players, who play for local B-league team Alvark Tokyo, experienced during the challenge.
However, Cue did surprisingly well and nailed all shoots with a whopping 100 percent accuracy. The machine, which uses artificial intelligence to learn and throw the ball, repeated the exact same motion every time to shoot consistently and outperform humans, who were not able to do that.
Expressing frustration over the defeat, Ando Ozuya, one of the players of the team, said he thought the robot would miss at least one shot, which never happened. Evidently, that’s the difference between humans and robots, which can be highly consistent when required, despite lacking imagination and flexibility.
Cue is 6.2 feet tall, which is nearly as tall as a professional basketball player but the machine is limited in many ways. It can neither walk or run on the court nor grab the ball on its own to take an aim at the basket. Another example of the missing balance between consistency and flexibility was the recent robot ski-challenge where some machine skied down the slopes perfectly, while others tripped on their way down. However, a few more upgrades and all these snafus could go away in a matter of years.