Knightscope KS was employed as a security robot at GMMB, a communications agency in Washington DC. The robots are equipped with cameras designed to provide a more physical presence than a regular security camera. Another highlighted feature is the fact that the robot is designed to move autonomously—a talent that has now backfired twice.
In 2016, a robot security guard at the Stanford Shopping Center in Silicon Valley knocked down a toddler while on duty. The bot reportedly hit 16-month-old Harwin Cheng, knocking him to the floor. It then just kept right on driving. Fortunately, Cheng was not seriously hurt by the incident, but it did raise serious questions about what a life full of robots means for us.
The robot’s creators describe the K5 as having a “commanding physical presence” and “advanced technology.” Other key features include “forensic capabilities” and a “gun detection” feature.
Though the robot didn’t knock anyone over in the case of GMMB, it did take a suicidal plunge into the company’s fountain. Several posts on Twitter documented the final moments of the robot.
Our D.C. office building got a security robot. It drowned itself.
We were promised flying cars, instead we got suicidal robots. pic.twitter.com/rGLTAWZMjn
— Bilal Farooqui (@bilalfarooqui) July 17, 2017
What do you think? Is the world simply not ready for robot security guards?