Boston Dynamics creepy robot dog is patrolling parks to encourage social distancing

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If you didn't get enough of a robot-filled future with the end of season three of "Westworld," here's your chance.

Boston Dynamics robot dog, known as Spot, is patrolling Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park in Singapore to help with social distancing practices during the coronavirus pandemic, the Singapore government announced.

The trial program, which started Friday, will see the creepy robot dog deployed over a 3 kilometer (1.8 miles) stretch in the River Plains section part of the park for two weeks during what they called "off-peak" hours.

File photo: A nimble robot that handles objects, climbs stairs, and will operate in offices, homes and outdoors.

File photo: A nimble robot that handles objects, climbs stairs, and will operate in offices, homes and outdoors. (Boston Dynamics)

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"A recorded message will be broadcast from Spot to remind park visitors to observe safe distancing measures," a release from the Government Technology Agency of Singapore said. "Spot will also be fitted with cameras – enabled with GovTech-developed video analytics – to estimate the number of visitors in parks. These cameras will not be able to track and/or recognize specific individuals, and no personal data will be collected."

In addition, the robot dog will be "controlled remotely" so as to minimize physical among contact staff, safe distancing ambassadors and park visitors.

"Spot is fitted with safety sensors to detect objects and people in its path. It has in-built algorithms to detect an object or person within 1 meter of its proximity to avoid collision," the agency added. "Spot will be accompanied by at least one NParks officer during the trial period."

Despite having a population of more than 5.6 million, Singapore has managed to largely keep the pandemic in-line in the country. According to Johns Hopkins University, 21,707 cases have occurred in the country with 20 deaths.

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If the trial is deemed successful, the agency said it would consider having Spot walk the park during peak hours, as well as moving to other parks, including the Jurong Lake Gardens.

The robot is also being used in a variety of other COVID-19-related manners in the country, including delivering medicine to patients.

Boston Dynamics began to sell the robot commercially in June 2019.

In October 2018, Boston Dynamics trialed having the robot walk around construction sites in Tokyo ahead of "commercial usage around the world."

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As of Friday afternoon, more than 3.87 million coronavirus cases have been diagnosed worldwide, more than 1.25 million of which are in the U.S., the most impacted country on the planet.

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