Lance Zierlein: I've seen the future of sports

Boston Dynamics has created a robot dog that can open doors. Boston Dynamics/Facebook

My Monday evening was going along just like any other Monday. I was sitting on my Texas Mattress Makers bed (shout out to my man Youval) going back and forth between catching up on “60 Days In” on television and a day’s worth of mentions that I had missed on Twitter.

Draft question. Answered. Comment about the Rockets. Liked. Comment about something that we said on the radio show. Answered and liked.

Then, I came upon a twitter mention that had no commentary. It was just a retweet of a video (above) and I was tagged in the retweet. I clicked on the video and there it was - a video of a “robot” that was built in the likeness of a dog’s body had taught itself to open a door and walk about (along with another robot dog friend). My first thought was to recall how eerily similar this robot looked to a killer robot dog in a Black Mirror episode entitled Metalhead. This episode was truly terrifying and should be watched immediately.

I retweeted the video and mentioned how terrifying it was. And it is. We are literally teaching these robots to become smarter. Wait… it’s not “we,” it’s Boston Dynamics. This group has also built a robot that looks like an astronaut in full space suit. This robot has been created to do box jumps and backflips. They’ve basically built robot J.J. Watt but with fewer selfies and a more durable back.

(Just a robot with sick hops who can also do a backflip. No big deal.)

Boston Dynamics Must Be Stopped

There is no question that we are watching passively as Robot Murder Dogs and Assassin Bots are being created in the Boston Dynamics labs in Waltham, Massachusetts. All I can think of is that we need to stop them. We need to come together and stop these f*cking robot makers or we will all be wiped out! It starts with the robots learning how to open a door and before you know it, they are cutting your brake lines and putting crushed glass in your oatmeal. Nah, fam. Not me.

Well I’ve got good news and bad news. The bad news is that they’ve already built 11 different type of robots that all do different things. Cheetah can gallop at 28 MPH, RiSE can climb up the side of building and trees with micro-claws, SandFlea can jump 30 feet vertically, and Handle who is 6 feet tall, runs 9 MPH and has a vertical of 48 inches. We are basically already dead.

Here is how this plays out (according to movie storylines I’ve seen from the '90s.) Bad guy hackers get into the Boston Dynamics database and find a way to alter their Artificial Intelligence so that they learn to kill us. Do you even watch Westworld? You might want to start because they are just laying this sh-- out there right now about how this is going to go down.

The Only Solution

Oh yeah, I gave you the bad news a little earlier, but I forgot to give you the good news! I think I have figured out how we can keep robot dogs and backflipping super Assassin Bots from wrecking our sh-- permanently. We make even more of them and start a sports league. Honestly, I don’t even care which sport it is, let’s just create a focused vision for what we are going to do with them.

I’m sure Boston Dynamics will be down with this because they are probably Patriots fans and are responsible for Tom Brady. Forty year old MVP? FOH, Robot! They might be down with creating more and more robots with different sizes and skills (like they already have) that can eventually populate football, or basketball, or baseball. No more concerns about CTE. No more concerns about escalating ticket prices due to athlete salaries. No more concerns over off-field issues with a robot (unless they are involved in an assassination, of course).

The Netflix show, Black Mirror, is usually spot-on regarding what we might be able to expect in the future from a technological standpoint. Well they were beaten to the punch on this one. In 1990 the game Cyberball 2072 came out where football was played by robots that would collide into each other and throw pass and catch it and do a lot of football things. What made this game so amazing (despite a Metacritic grade of 41%) was that robots were doing football and not doing murdering and hunting of humans. Robots in sports? I say yes.


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