MIT's Mini Cheetah robot knows how to do backflips

If robots usher in the apocalypse, they'll at least have style.

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MIT's original Cheetah robot is already quite nimble on its feet, but there's now a smaller counterpart that might put it to shame. Researchers have shown off a new Mini Cheetah that can pull off a number of slick moves, including backflips -- it's the first four-legged robot to pull off the feat, according to MIT. It can also walk upside-down Exorcist-style, pick itself up after falls and trot at a relatively brisk 5.5MPH on less-than-smooth terrain.

The small-scale Cheetah is far from perfect. It doesn't always stick the landing, as you can see in the clip below. It's also just a research project, you're not likely to see this exact bot in the wild like you might with Boston Dynamics' SpotMini. This does bode well for a future of agile automatons, though. And look at it this way: if you're worried that robots will turn on humanity, they'll at least have some panache while they exact their vengeance.

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