Google Buys Boston Dynamics, Gets a Bunch of Scary Robots

PHOTO: A BigDog robot at Boston Dynamics, which is being developed to help soldiers carry heavy equipment in the field.
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Andy Rubin, former CEO of Android, became talk of the tech town two weeks ago when he said that Google would be starting its own robotics company. Now, he's making news again as he quietly announced over a tweet that Google bought Boston Dynamics, one of the major robotics companies, on Friday the 13th.

As reported by The New York Times, Google confirmed that it had completed the acquisition of Boston Dynamics on Dec. 13. Marc Raibert, founder of Boston Dynamics, told the Times, "I am excited by Andy and Google's ability to think very, very big, with the resources to make it happen."

While the name Boston Dynamics might not ring a bell, some of it's projects might. The company specializes in autonomous animal-like robots that have an uncanny ability to get from point A to point B. SandFlea can leap 30 feet into the air and land on a building's rooftop, while Cheetah can run morethan 29 miles per hour, faster than Olympic sprinter Usain Bolt.

The company also has robots that resemble humans. Atlas is a walking robot that can navigate rocky and uneven terrain. Some of the finalists in the DARPA Robotics Challenge received an Atlas robot to tinker with.

Google did not reveal how much it paid for Boston Dynamics, nor did it say what the ultimate goal of the robotics division was.

But it's clear that Google means business and may give Amazon's delivery drones a run for their money in the race for turning science fiction into reality.

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