Citation record for Incident 68

Suggested citation format

Anonymous. (2017-07-17) Incident Number 68. in McGregor, S. (ed.) Artificial Intelligence Incident Database. Partnership on AI. Retrieved on July 30, 2021 from incidentdatabase.ai/cite/68.

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2017-07-17

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DC security robot says everything is fine, throws itself into pool

engadget.com · 2017

Don't read too much into this, but a security robot face-planted into an indoor fountain inside of a Washington, DC office building today. It's a coincidence, we're sure, but maybe this robot just knows what everyone else in DC does. Robots tasked with securing even small areas of our capital can sense what a joke it's become....

DC security robot says everything is fine, throws itself into pool
DC security robot quits job by drowning itself in a fountain

theverge.com · 2017

I’m sorry to inform you that perhaps some robots are taking this whole “be more human” thing a bit too far. I’ve seen people make jokes about jumping into a river or out of a window when they feel distressed, but one DC-based security robot appears to have interpreted this on a literal level.

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

It's a fun day here at @gmmb. The super high-tech security robot at our office complex has had a mishap. pic.twitter.com/nhRshrJA9w — Greg Pinelo (@gregpinelo) July 17, 2017

We don’t yet know the full story of what happened, but it appears the robot — a Knightscope K5 — ran itself right into a water fountain inside an office complex. No word on whether it survived its injury or why the incident occurred. Did it hate its job? Did it just overhear some horrifying news? Did it realize that the future is not, in fact, now?

The K5 is evidently prone to making headlines about things falling over. Earlier this year, a drunk man was arrested for knocking the K5 over, though the robot wasn’t always at the victim end of the spectrum after tripping up a toddler and coldly driving away last summer. The K5 was created to be used as a security patrol robot, standing at five feet tall and weighing 300 pounds. Its rocket-like shape and armless design make it difficult for it to get back up after toppling over, but today’s fall straight into a fountain seems truly like an act of free will. I wouldn’t want your job either, K5. Live your truth....

DC security robot quits job by drowning itself in a fountain
Security robot falls into pond after failing to spot stairs or water

theregister.co.uk · 2017

A security robot tasked with patrolling an office building in Washington DC has instead driven itself into a water feature.

The bot appears to have been a Knightscope K5, a surveillance bot designed to roll around “parking lots, corporate campuses and hospitals” so it can use its video cameras, anomaly detection, live video streaming and real-time notifications capabilities to inform you if you need to send a human security guard to sort something out.

Knightscope says the bot can find a way through “even the most complex environments”. But not, evidently, the water feature of The Washington Harbour, an office and retail complex in Washington, DC. As the Tweet below shows, the K5 decided to take a dip in said water feature.

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

Knightscope told The Washington Post that the incident was “an isolated event”.

The company's also been good-humoured about the incident, responding to social media jibes with a riposte that the K5 is a security robot, not a submarine robot. ®

Sponsored: Becoming a Pragmatic Security Leader...

Security robot falls into pond after failing to spot stairs or water
Robot Security Guard Commits Suicide in Public Fountain

nymag.com · 2017

From a Wall Street Journal report on Friday:

Days before Libyan military commander Khalifa Haftar launched an offensive to seize the capital and attempt to unite the divided country under his rule, Saudi Arabia promised tens of millions of dollars to help pay for the operation, according to senior advisers to the Saudi government. …

Foreign powers including the U.S. and the European Union have looked to Mr. Haftar, whose forces control much of eastern Libya, as a necessary participant in peace negotiations with the United Nations-backed government in Tripoli. …

Mr. Haftar accepted the recent Saudi offer of funds, according to the senior Saudi advisers, who said the money was intended for buying the loyalty of tribal leaders, recruiting and paying fighters, and other military purposes.

The American Conservative’s Daniel Larison adds:

The UAE has been one of Haftar’s principal backers for many years, but the Saudi role as a sponsor in the conflict has been growing. Considering the havoc those governments have wrought in Yemen and the increasing recklessness of Saudi foreign policy under Mohammed bin Salman, it is not surprising that the Saudis encouraged Haftar in his ill-considered gamble. Both governments have become the leading destabilizing forces in the region over the last few years, and the new attack on Tripoli is the latest example of that. Like their previous destructive power plays in other parts of the region, the Saudi-backed attack has gone poorly and backfired on their client....

Robot Security Guard Commits Suicide in Public Fountain
Security Robot Drowns in Fountain to Internet's Amusement

time.com · 2017

Twitter tributes have flooded in for a state of the art security robot that plunged wheel-over-nosecone into a shallow fountain near Washington D.C. — and couldn’t get back up.

The roving robot — a four-foot tall oblong affair developed by a silicon valley startup called Knightscope — was on its usual crime-fighting rounds when it clattered down a set of steps and into the water feature outside Georgetown’s Washington Harbour office and retail complex, the Washington Post reports.

Images of its helpless, partially submerged form prompted a torrent of Twitter jibes. “We were promised flying cars, instead we got suicidal robots,” wrote one Twitter user.

Others posted pictures of (human) maintenance workers lifting the robot from the pool.

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Knightscope, which said it was investigating the incident, described the mishap an “an isolated event” and promised to deliver a new robot within the week, according to the Post. An office worker at the Georgetown complex said this one had only been on the job a few days before it met its watery demise.

[Washington Post]

Write to Joseph Hincks at joseph.hincks@timeinc.com....

Security Robot Drowns in Fountain to Internet's Amusement
This Robot Was Meant To Patrol An Office Building. Instead, It Fell Into A Fountain.

huffingtonpost.com · 2017

The rise of the robots has been (slightly) dampened.

An autonomous 300-pound crime-fighting android tasked with patrolling an office building in Washington, D.C., met an untimely end on Monday — after it tumbled into a water fountain.

Twitter user Bilal Farooqui posted online a snap of the hapless machine’s demise:

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

The K5 machine, which Silicon Valley start-up Knightscope developed, was reportedly patrolling the Washington Harbour complex in Georgetown when it fell down steps and landed on its side in the water.

In a statement to The Washington Post, its creators noted that no one was injured in the “isolated event” and pledged to replace the ’droid within the next week. The company also posted this lighthearted tweet:

Security robot, yes. Submarine robot, no. Got it. - K5 — Knightscope (@iKnightscope) July 17, 2017

It was up to office workers to fish the heavy machine from the water:

It's a fun day here at @gmmb. The super high-tech security robot at our office complex has had a mishap. pic.twitter.com/nhRshrJA9w — Greg Pinelo (@gregpinelo) July 17, 2017

HuffPost has reached for comment on what happened to the robot after the unfortunate incident.

But as Farooqui’s initial tweet went viral, other social media users chimed in ― with many poking fun at the robot’s sadly premature end to guard duty:

It's ok security robot. It's a stressful job, we've all been there. pic.twitter.com/LQbnntbCRm — ✨💖Sparkle Ops💖✨ (@SparkleOps) July 17, 2017

Poor Marvin, sometimes life as a security robot is just too tough. https://t.co/0avBQv98l6 — Mathias Payer (@gannimo) July 17, 2017

"What is my purpose?" "You're a security robot!" "Oh my god" https://t.co/H03o4Ltysk — John Best 🌹 (@Wintermute21) July 17, 2017

Arya Stark: When people ask you what happened here, tell them the North remembers. Tell them winter came for your security robot. pic.twitter.com/ZEz58gT4V7 — Ryan Mac (@RMac18) July 17, 2017...

This Robot Was Meant To Patrol An Office Building. Instead, It Fell Into A Fountain.
Security guard robot ends it all by throwing itself into a watery grave

arstechnica.com · 2017

The automation revolution, where most of our jobs are replaced by robots and we spend the rest of our days floating around on rubber rings sipping piña coladas, has hit a snag: a Knightscope K5 security bot appears to have fallen down some stairs and drowned itself in a water feature.

The scene, which took place at the mixed-use Washington Harbour development in Washington DC, was captured by Bilal Farooqui on Twitter. One local office worker reported that the K5 robot had only been patrolling the complex for a few days. Knightscope said in a statement that the "isolated incident" was under investigation, and that a new robot would be delivered to Washington Harbour this week for free.

We first wrote about the Dalek-like K5 back in 2014. The first bots were deployed on campuses and shopping complexes near the company's headquarters in Mountain View, California. By December 2016 the company had 15 security bots actively deployed in California, and earlier in 2017 it disclosed that it is "presently deploying its technology with 24 clients" in "five states and three time zones."

The K5, which is equipped with lots and lots of sensors, is ostensibly an interesting piece of high-tech kit. It has a 360-degree video camera array, sensitive microphones, air quality sensors, and even thermal imaging capabilities. The cameras can apparently scan up to 1,500 car number plates per minute; the microphones can detect gun shots and other notable sounds. Autonomous mobility is provided by a mix of lidar, radar, and the video camera array—but given that it missed the steps down into the Washington Harbour water feature, perhaps the software needs tweaking.

Knightscope's K5 can't yet make arrests, taser a criminal, or wade into a burning building, but it can phone the cops or fire off a loud siren. Basically, if your shopping centre or office complex had five patrolling security guards, the idea is to replace four of them with robots and leave the fifth in a central office that can respond to any issues.

In practice, the K5 has had a fairly rough few years. In 2016, one of the robots, which weigh over 300 pounds (135kg), ran over over a 16-month-old child at the Stanford Shopping Center. Knightscope called it a "freakish accident," suspended the bots while it carried out an investigation, and formally apologised to the kid's family. In April this year, right outside the Knightscope offices, a drunk man beat up one of the bots as it was patrolling the car park.

"Security guard," along with fast-food  and factory workers , is fairly high up the list of jobs that will eventually be replaced by autonomous systems. That the K5 fell into a fountain after three years of commercial use is a little disappointing from a technological standpoint.

And now, I leave you with some more photos from the Washington Harbour security bot, which decided to end it all after just a few days of service. RIP.

It's a fun day here at @gmmb. The super high-tech security robot at our office complex has had a mishap. pic.twitter.com/nhRshrJA9w — Greg Pinelo (@gregpinelo) July 17, 2017

It's ok security robot. It's a stressful job, we've all been there. pic.twitter.com/LQbnntbCRm — ✨💖Sparkle Ops💖✨ (@SparkleOps) July 17, 2017

Now read our in-depth feature on the incoming automation revolution......

Security guard robot ends it all by throwing itself into a watery grave
DC security robot K5 quits job by drowning itself in a fountain

cnbc.com · 2017

I'm sorry to inform you that perhaps some robots are taking this whole "be more human" thing a bit too far. I've seen people make jokes about jumping into a river or out of a window when they feel distressed, but one DC-based security robot appears to have interpreted this on a literal level.

We don't yet know the full story of what happened, but it appears the robot — a Knightscope K5 — ran itself right into a water fountain inside an office complex. No word on whether it survived its injury or why the incident occurred. Did it hate its job? Did it just overhear some horrifying news? Did it realize that the future is not, in fact, now?

The K5 is evidently prone to making headlines about things falling over. Earlier this year, a drunk man was arrested for knocking the K5 over, though the robot wasn't always at the victim end of the spectrum after tripping up a toddler and coldly driving away last summer. The K5 was created to be used as a security patrol robot, standing at five feet tall and weighing 300 pounds. Its rocket-like shape and armless design make it difficult for it to get back up after toppling over, but today's fall straight into a fountain seems truly like an act of free will. I wouldn't want your job either, K5. Live your truth.

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DC security robot K5 quits job by drowning itself in a fountain
Suicidal robot security guard drowns itself by driving into pond

independent.co.uk · 2017

A robot has drowned itself by driving into a pool.

The company markets the security robot as better than real guards in part because it never gets bored of what it does. But it appears to have looked to put an end to that work and has driven into a pond.

Pictures from the Georgetown Waterfront – the shopping centre and office complex where the robot worked – show staff members looking to decide how best to fish the now defunct robot out of the pool.

We’ll tell you what’s true. You can form your own view. From 15p €0.18 $0.18 USD 0.27 a day, more exclusives, analysis and extras.

When the robot works, it is able to understand its own environment and judge whether something is wrong, using a combination of microphones, video cameras and other sensors. In the future it's expected to get other features like gun detection and artificial intelligence.

If it detects that something is wrong then it can squeak, whistle and make other loud noises intended to dissuade criminals and others from causing a nuisance.

The Knightscope security robot, which looks something like a rounded dalek, is a cheap way of patrolling around sensitive and public areas. It costs only $7 per hour to rent out, and has extra skills including the ability to withstand attack and not to get bored, freeing people from having to carry out dull patrols.

But the Knightscope robot has run into a number of problems. Earlier this year, it emerged that a drunken man had tried to assault one of the machines while it was out on patrol, and another had knocked over a toddler.

The company had said it was proud of its robot after the assault by a man, for which he was arrested. "The robot did exactly as it was suppose to do – the 'assault' was detected and immediately reported, the alarms on the robot sounded, the suspect attempted to flee the scene and was detained by one of my colleagues and me until the Mountain View Police arrived," a spokesperson told The Independent at the time....

Suicidal robot security guard drowns itself by driving into pond
When Robot Face-Plants In Fountain, Onlookers Show Humanity - By Gloating

npr.org · 2017

When Robot Face-Plants In Fountain, Onlookers Show Humanity — By Gloating

The rise of artificial intelligence poses its fair share of dangers. Last year, for instance, physicist Stephen Hawking said its development could be "either the best or the worst thing ever to happen to humanity." And just this weekend, Tesla CEO Elon Musk described AI as a potential "existential threat" to human civilization.

But for now at least, we can chalk up one win against our future overlords.

On Monday, onlookers at an office complex in Washington, D.C., discovered a curious sight: the body of a security robot, floating face-down in a fountain. It was the remains of a Knightscope K5, an autonomous bot able to "detect unusual activity and report it for humans to investigate," according to the company's website.

Kristian De Meo of MRP Realty, which manages Washington Harbour, tells All Things Considered the bot was new to the facility. She says the robot — which they've nicknamed Steve, an acronym for Security Technology Enhancement Vehicle — "has spent a little over a week where Knightscope has been on-site programming it and also mapping out the property."

"Evidently, yesterday it faced its first challenge in the form of a small fountain," De Meo adds.

Knightscope tells NPR no one was hurt in the "isolated event," which the company is currently investigating. They say a replacement will be delivered to Washington Harbour at no extra cost.

As of this writing, no foul play is suspected.

In a tweet, Knightscope made light of the incident, quoting its bot saying, "I heard humans can take a dip in the water in this heat, but robots cannot." (Chalk another one up for humans!)

But the BBC notes this is not the first run-in these rolling mall cops have had with humanity:

"Last year, a 16-month-old toddler was run over by one of the autonomous devices in a Silicon Valley shopping centre. "And earlier this year, a Californian man was arrested after attacking a Knightscope robot. "The man, who was drunk at the time of the incident, later said he wanted to 'test' the machine, according to Knightscope."

At any rate, the bystanders who watched the robot's rescue in person and on social media Monday demonstrated one quality that still sets us apart from the things we have created: the capacity to gloat....

When Robot Face-Plants In Fountain, Onlookers Show Humanity - By Gloating
Knightscope security robot goes viral after fountain fall

dailymail.co.uk · 2017

Alas, it seems we've got a few more years before the robots take over.

A security robot created by the company Knightscope was patrolling an office complex in Washington D.C. when it rolled into a fountain and met its untimely demise on Monday.

The incident went viral on Twitter after Bilal Farooqui, an employee at the Washington Harbour complex, tweeted a photo of the 300-pound android, writing: 'We were promised flying cars, instead we got suicidal robots.'

A security robot created by the company Knightscope was patrolling an office complex in Washington D.C. when it rolled into a fountain and met its untimely demise

The K5 robot, which measures about five-feet tall, is billed as an 'autonomous presence' that is rented out to malls, office buildings, and parking lots to enforce order

The K5 robot, which measures about five-feet tall, is rented out to malls, office buildings, and parking lots to enforce order with a built-in video camera, license plate recognition, and thermal imaging.

Billed as an 'autonomous presence' that can 'guide [itself] through even the most complex environments', the robot spins around and whistles.

It appears the drudgery became too much on Monday when the robot rolled down some stairs and fell into the fountain.

Employees were pictured hauling the robot out of the water, and Knightscope said it would deliver a new robot to the office building for free.

After Farooqui posted a photo of the robot partially submerged, Twitter users went wild over the image.

Guillermo Meneses shared a previous photo of himself standing next to the robot, joking: 'My remembrance moment with Steve the Robot. Just last Friday. We were such good friends; he looked so happy and healthy'

After Farooqui posted a photo of the robot partially submerged, Twitter users went wild over the image

Adam Singer wrote: 'That robot is what all of us want to do in 2017.'

User Chris Mahan tweeted: 'Just put it in a big bowl of rice and wait three days.'

Peter Singer wrote: 'Steps are our best defense against the Robopocalypse.'

Colin Weir questioned the robot's efficacy, writing: 'I had a cheap second hand roomba that could avoid stairs.'

Brett Rosner tweeted 'Rest in pieces', while Tony Solorzano made a reference to the book The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

'Somewhere at the end of the universe, Marvin the Paranoid Android is looking up and saying, "sigh... Amateur...,"' he wrote.

This isn't the first time a Knightscope robot has made headlines. One rolled over a 16-month-old boy in Stanford, California, last summer.

In April, Jason Sylvain, 41, was arrested for drunkenly attacking a robot in a Mountain View, California parking lot....

Knightscope security robot goes viral after fountain fall
DC security robot can't take the job pressure, jumps in pool to end itself

indiatoday.in · 2017

Managing work-related stress is tough. We've all been there, trying our best to cope with pressure at our work places. Now the bots are learning how difficult it is to be a human. A security robot patrolling at the Washington Harbour office just probably couldn't take it anymore and finally decided to end itself by jumping itself into the nearby fountain. No, not really. But it's true that the bot fell into the pool while it was patrolling the compound and then couldn't got up, effectively frying its electronic bits.

The photos posted on social media shows a Knightscope K5 floating in the water with face down and onlookers with some clicking photos while some helping to recover the 'body' from the water. The incident has left the robot lifeless, although not humans were injured in the "incident".

The reason behind this "extreme step" taken by K5 is not known. But that aside, chances are that the robot lost its balance on the steps near the pool and then fell. Given its design, which is cone shaped it would have been impossible for it to get up.

Also Read: Wonderful things happen when AI and Robotics go on a date

The incident received mixed reactions on the internet. Some found the mishap funny while some empathised with the robot, which is also funny. Bilal Farooqui, a Twitter user wrote, "Our D.C. office building got a security robot. It drowned itself. We were promised flying cars, instead we got suicidal robots."

This isn't the first time that this particular robot from Knightscope has been in news. The robot, which is five-feet tall and weighs 300 pounds, made headlines last year when it tripped over a 16 months old boy, face planting him to the floor. The robot cold-heartedly walked away after injuring the boy as if nothing had happened. In an another incident, a 41-year-old Jason Sylvain was jailed after he knocked over a Knightscope security robot, causing several scratches to it....

DC security robot can't take the job pressure, jumps in pool to end itself
A Robot Security Guard Just Drowned Itself by Driving into a Water Fountain

interestingengineering.com · 2017

Apparently, even robots have bad days. For one robot, the bad day was just too much that it has thrown itself into a fountain. The security robot at a D.C. mall appears to have made the potentially suicidal decision all by itself. The fed up bot was a Knightscope K5. The K5 was developed as a security robot that uses facial recognition, and a variety of sensors to detect potential criminals.

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) 17. juli 2017

Clumsy robot designed in wake of U.S. violence

It is unclear if this particular K5 survived the dip or what were the reasons behind the plunge. Was it malware? Or had the overworked security guard simply had its fill?

It's a fun day here at @gmmb. The super high-tech security robot at our office complex has had a mishap. pic.twitter.com/nhRshrJA9w — Greg Pinelo (@gregpinelo) July 17, 2017

The makers of the K5, a robotics start-up based in Mountain View, California, were inspired to develop the robot after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.

This isn't the first time the K5 has made headlines

The bullet shaped robot stands at 5 feet tall and weighs 136 kilograms. Its armless design makes it difficult for the peacekeeper to get back up when pushed over. This isn't the first time the K5 has made headlines. Earlier this year a 41-year old was arrested after he pushed a K5 over as it patrolled a car park in Silicon Valley. The K5 isn’t always the victim though, last year a K5 at the Stanford Shopping Center in Silicon Valley ran into a toddler, before allegedly just rolling on.

16 mo old has injuries to leg, foot after @StanfordShop security robot knocks him down and runs him over. #paloalto pic.twitter.com/tJdDNeFJq1 — Lilian Kim (@liliankim7) July 12, 2016

Knightscope quickly put out apology calling the accident a ‘freakish accident’. Knightscope chief executive William Santana Li went on to say, "Our first thoughts are for the family and we are thankful there were no serious injuries. Our primary mission is to serve the public’s overall safety, and we take any circumstance that would compromise that mission very seriously."

[Image Source: Knightscope]

Robots raise privacy issues

The K5’s ‘eye’ is able to be accessed by a constant video feed played back to the security headquarters. This has raised big questions about surveillance and privacy. There is no signage on the robot that indicates it is taking video footage, the robot can also take photographs without any warnings. Additionally, it has the ability to monitor conversations. The legislation around autonomous robots in public places has not kept up with the technology. Jeramie Scott, a national security fellow at the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) was quoted as saying, “Automated surveillance, facial recognition and license plate recognition in public makes us all suspects. The K5 could become like a cuter, less aggressive Terminator that kills privacy instead of people.”

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Sources: The Verge, The Register...

A Robot Security Guard Just Drowned Itself by Driving into a Water Fountain
Security Robot Takes Its Own Life in DC Fountain Tragedy

extremetech.com · 2017

On July 17, a Knightscope K5 robot appears to have lost all patience for its job as a security guard and flung itself into a water fountain. It’s not exactly clear where in Washington DC the incident took place, with mentions of both GMMB and the Washington Harbor mall both popping up on Twitter. Either way, this ignores the true tragedy of the situation — the robot for whom stairs proved too difficult a foe to conquer.

This isn’t the first time Knightscope has been in the public eye for a less-than stellar reason. Last year, a K5 at the Stanford Shopping Mall knocked down a child and ran over his foot; the parents and Knightscope itself have rather different views on the situation, which should surprise exactly no one. Visiting Knightscope’s website felt a bit like hitting a GoFundMe page. Check it out:

One has to give credit where credit is due; it takes a certain amount of chutzpah to brazenly ask your website visitors if they could please give you some money while they’re checking out your suicidal, child-mashing, cheerful-looking robot. In case you are curious, here’s some of the claimed features for the K5:

Now, let me be the first to admit I’m no expert on robotics. But this feature page seems to raise far more questions than it answers. What kind of forensic capabilities, exactly, does this robot possess? Can it dust for fingerprints? Enhance security camera footage? Analyze blood spatter patterns in a given room to determine how and where someone was killed or how they struggled with one another?

The K5’s security cameras and audio recording capability do provide some forensic evidence. But this thing ain’t Batman, or even R2-D2. It can, however, use license plate detection to determine if undesirables are present in the area. The website claims the Knightscope K5 can “Use license plate recognition to determine the presence of known suspects, those who have been issued criminal trespass warnings, or even terminated employees.”

I’m also particularly curious about what qualifies as an “anomaly” and how Knightscope intends to deliver that “gun detection” feature. Elsewhere on its site, Knightscope claims that their friendly looking robot will intimidate criminals with its 300-pound weight and 5’3 stature. The only person I can think of who might meet those criteria is Santa Claus, and even NORAD’s radar data estimates he’s 5’7, not 5’3.

Farewell, brave Knightscope K5, at least until an appropriate factory servicing and/or RMA can be arranged. We scarcely knew ye, but based on your public product specifications, it’s hard to feel like we’re missing much.

Feature image by Greg Pinelo...

Security Robot Takes Its Own Life in DC Fountain Tragedy
The 'suicidal robot' that drowned in a fountain didn't kill itself after all

independent.co.uk · 2017

A security robot called Steve did not commit suicide by falling into a fountain in Washington DC, but due to a tragic accident.

After retrieving data from Steve the roboguard’s black box discovered that the accident was caused not by suicide but by skidding on a “loose brick surface”, according to the machine’s manufacturer, Knightscope.

A technical error led to the K5 robot’s demise when an algorithm did not detect the uneven surface, leading to Steve tumbling into the fountain and drowning.

We’ll tell you what’s true. You can form your own view. From 15p €0.18 $0.18 USD 0.27 a day, more exclusives, analysis and extras.

A replacement machine was sent to the office complex within 48 hours. Washington Harbour also received a month’s credit as well as an all-inclusive service policy include maintenance costs, according to Reuters.

The manufacturer of the security robot downplayed the incident, saying it was an “isolated” incident which would lead to improvements. “Developing state-of-the-art autonomous technology must be done in real-world environments,” said the Silicon Valley-based maker.

“It is not commercially reasonable to be developed in constrained laboratory settings.”

According to the company, the K5 Autonomous Data Machine which is about five feet tall, was on a mission to map out the grounds of the complex when it tumbled down some stairs and toppled into the fountain.

The incident went viral on Twitter after an employee at the Washington Harbour complex, Bilal Farooqui posted a picture of the robot with news of Steve’s ill-fated dip in the fountain. “We were promised flying cars, instead we got suicidal robots,” he wrote.

Photos of the submerged robot were shared, showing bemused staff wading into the water. A woman in a black dress looks on pensively.

Other tweets suggested that the robot had quit its job and it was a “win” for humans.

The K5 has a 360-degree video camera, several microphones, air quality sensors and has thermal imaging capabilities. The Dalek-like machine can scan up to 1,500 number plates per second, while the microphones can detect gun shots, according to Ars Technica.

Shape Created with Sketch. Meet the robots - the strange creations of Boston Dynamics Show all 6 left Created with Sketch. right Created with Sketch. Shape Created with Sketch. Meet the robots - the strange creations of Boston Dynamics 1/6 The LS3 is a four-legged, intelligent robot with an array of cameras and sensors that allow it, for example, to follow a leader of all kinds of terrain Boston Dynamics via YouTube 2/6 The eeriest of all the Boston Dynamics robots, the PetMan could - among other things - test chemical suits Boston Dynamics via YouTube 3/6 PetMan's big brother, Atlas may be used as a first response to disaster situations Reuters 4/6 RHex has been developed to cross the trickiest terrain and can be controlled from 700 metres away Boston Dynamics via YouTube 5/6 Built for speed, Cheetah can run at 28.3mph - and can prove it on the treadmill Boston Dynamics via YouTube 6/6 The remote-control car with a difference - it can jump 30ft in the air (wouldn't you want one for Christmas?) Boston Dynamics via YouTube 1/6 The LS3 is a four-legged, intelligent robot with an array of cameras and sensors that allow it, for example, to follow a leader of all kinds of terrain Boston Dynamics via YouTube 2/6 The eeriest of all the Boston Dynamics robots, the PetMan could - among other things - test chemical suits Boston Dynamics via YouTube 3/6 PetMan's big brother, Atlas may be used as a first response to disaster situations Reuters 4/6 RHex has been developed to cross the trickiest terrain and can be controlled from 700 metres away Boston Dynamics via YouTube 5/6 Built for speed, Cheetah can run at 28.3mph - and can prove it on the treadmill Boston Dynamics via YouTube 6/6 The remote-control car with a difference - it can jump 30ft in the air (wouldn't you want one for Christmas?) Boston Dynamics via YouTube

In 2016, the K5 was involved in an accident when it ran over a 16-month-old child at the Stanford Shopping Centre, leaving him bruised and shaken. "The robot hit my son's head and he fell face down on the floor. The robot did not stop, it kept moving forward," Tiffany Cheng, the toddler's mother, to ABC 7. "He was crying like crazy."

Ironically, Knightscope said that Steve was being repaired and is “tentatively scheduled to patrol of all places, a major aquarium.”...

The 'suicidal robot' that drowned in a fountain didn't kill itself after all
Robot cop found face down in office-block fountain

theguardian.com · 2017

Machine built to keep humans in check defeated by stairs and fountain in incident where ‘no one was harmed’

The machine uprising has been dealt a serious blow after a robot cop was found face down in a fountain.

Built to autonomously patrol offices and shopping malls, the Knightscope K5 security robot is meant to be able to navigate environments and keep unruly humans in check. Instead, after being deployed to a Washington DC office block, it was found drowned in a watery grave. Much like a Dalek, it appears to have been defeated by stairs.

Bilal Farooqui (@bilalfarooqui) 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

The bizarro egg-shaped robot’s premature demise is not thought to be suspicious. It is believed the robot fell down the steps of its own fecklessness.

Stacy Dean Stephens, vice president of marketing and sales at Knightscope, told Cnet that it was an “isolated incident” for the K5 unit and that “no people were harmed or involved in any way”, although apparently humans in wellies were required to fish out the defunct robot.

Peter W. Singer (@peterwsinger) Steps are our best defense against the Robopocalypse

(Security robot down at Georgetown harbor) pic.twitter.com/eVf7YUJX1j

Since taking the streets in limited numbers, the K5 patrol bot, which is apparently packed with sensors to be the smart eyes and ears for its human law enforcement colleagues, has had its fair share of incidents. In April, a K5 patrolling the mean streets of Google-home-town Mountain View, California was allegedly involved in a carpark altercation with a 41-year-old man, while in July 2016 another K5 unit was accused of running over a 16-month-old child in a Stanford shopping centre....

Robot cop found face down in office-block fountain
Security robot 'drowns itself' in office fountain

telegraph.co.uk · 2017

But this particular robot, for reasons as yet not known, appears to have driven down the steps of the fountain in the middle of the office and ended up floating sideways, rendering it immobile. It was removed, although is likely to have been permanently damaged.

Knightscope, the company behind the droid, said it was investigating the incident and that it was an isolated event.

But that didn't stop people drawing comparisons to Marvin, the paranoid robot from The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy series, and speculating that things might have just become too much for the K5....

Security robot 'drowns itself' in office fountain
This robot is designed to keep people safe, but it fell in a fountain and couldn't get up

businessinsider.com.au · 2017

The Knightscope K5 security robot’s job is to be on the look out for crime.

It might also want to keep an eye on where it’s going.

Officer workers at the Georgetown Harbour office and retail space in Washington D.C. tweeted photos on Monday of the building’s K5 marooned and toppled over in a water fountain. The K5 is limbless, so it couldn’t lift itself out of the fountain, and good old fashioned humanity had to come to the rescue.

It was perfect fodder for comedic tweets:

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

wow i can’t believe they baptized the robot pic.twitter.com/pqYjRCrzHE

— James Vincent (@jjvincent) July 17, 2017

Arya Stark: When people ask you what happened here, tell them the North remembers. Tell them winter came for your security robot. pic.twitter.com/ZEz58gT4V7

— Ryan Mac (@RMac18) July 17, 2017

The K5 is designed to act as an extra set of eyes for law-enforcement and security services in public spaces.

It’s unclear how this particular K5 ended up in the fountain, which has steps leading into the water. It’s possible it was the result of a prank. Earlier in April, a hardware engineer reportedly knocked over a 300-pound K5 robot, resulting in the engineer’s arrest.

We might laugh today at the shortcomings of robots, but there will surely be a day when they won’t be so easily toppled.

Business Insider Emails & Alerts Site highlights each day to your inbox. Email Address Join

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram....

This robot is designed to keep people safe, but it fell in a fountain and couldn't get up
The robot revolution has been put on hold

qz.com · 2017

If you’re worried about the inevitable rise of the robots and the destruction of the human race—don’t be.

One of the robots produced by Knightscope—which produces egg- and car-shaped security robots and wants everyone with spare cash to invest in it—either lost the will to live, or wasn’t able to perceive where the area it was patrolling ended and a small fountain began. The robots are supposed to be able to roam around an area, detect threats and warn human security guards.

The robot, stationed in the Georgetown area of Washington DC, took a tumble and had to be recovered by some humans in rain boots. It seems that much like the Daleks in Doctor Who, these robots also struggle with steps. Knightscope wasn’t immediately available to comment on what happened.

But based on my own intrepid reporting, security bots don’t seem to be particularly adept at stopping mischievous kids even when they’re upright:...

The robot revolution has been put on hold
Security Robot Commits Suicide In Fountain Because The World Is Terrible

iflscience.com · 2017

In this day and age of climate change-denying presidents, lack of healthcare, and anti-vaxxers, it’s easy to get downtrodden about the world. For one robot, things got a bit too much, and it appears to have thrown itself into a fountain in a somber act of robot suicide.

The robot was a Knightscope K5, employed as a security robot at communications agency GMMB in Washington DC. These robots are equipped with cameras to provide a more physical presence than a regular security camera.

They’re also designed to move autonomously, which seems to be how this robot ended up in a fountain. A few posts on Twitter documented the final moments of this K5 robot, as it ended up face down in a watery grave. RIP K5. We barely knew ye. Or maybe it was just being baptized.

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-

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On the company’s website, they highlight some of the key features of the robot. These include “forensic capabilities”, such as recording license plates and something to do with wireless signals. It also boasts an upcoming “gun detection” feature, however useful that might be.

The K5 is getting compared to R2-D2 in a lot of places, but for us, we like to think of it more as those security droids in Wall-E. Or perhaps some sort of Dalek. Hey, Doctor Who is pretty popular at the moment, right?

This isn’t the first time K5 has run into trouble. In April, a drunk man managed to knock down one of the 135-kilogram (300-pound) robots. And last year, a K5 accidentally ran over a 16-month-old toddler and then drove off, in what’s surely one of the first robotic hit and runs.

"The robot hit my son's head and he fell down facing down on the floor and the robot did not stop and it kept moving forward," the child’s mom, Tiffany Teng, told ABC7 news back then.

-

Knightscope hasn’t responded to this latest incident yet, so it’s unclear what the damage to the robot will be, and whether it’s salvageable. We do know that these robots are employed at minimum wage though (we’re not joking, check out the video below), so hopefully a replacement can be found.

Yesterday we also had Elon Musk warning us about the problem artificial intelligence poses to the future of human civilization. Based on this latest evidence, we might not have too much to worry about just yet.

But just remember, no matter how bad the world might seem, there’s always someone for you to talk to. Even if you’re a robot....

Security Robot Commits Suicide In Fountain Because The World Is Terrible
Robot Security Guard 'Drowns Itself' In Water Fountain

huffingtonpost.com.au · 2017

A security guard robot has met a watery end in a shopping centre water fountain, prompting a social media storm of doomsday predictions about suicidal robots and Marvin-related humour.

The Knightscope security robot was patrolling the Georgetown Waterfront shopping complex in Washington D.C. on Monday when it apparently launched itself to its death.

"Our D.C. office building got a security robot. It drowned itself," one Twitter user Bilal Farooqui‏ wrote.

"We were promised flying cars, instead we got suicidal robots."

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

Others tweeted images of the robot's human colleagues mounting a rescue from the fountain.

It's a fun day here at @gmmb. The super high-tech security robot at our office complex has had a mishap. pic.twitter.com/nhRshrJA9w — Greg Pinelo (@gregpinelo) July 17, 2017

The robot is a Knightscope security robot, used by several Californian shopping centres for security. It's designed to identify anomalies in its environment, and then alert other (human) guards to any security threats.

While some mourned the passing of 'Steve the robot', others used the droid's untimely end to take down Elon Musk's predictions that artificial intelligence poses a fundamental threat to humanity.

Don't know what @elonmusk is so worked up about... — Theo Priestley (@tprstly) July 17, 2017

Elon Musk: "Robots will be able do everything better than us."

Robots: pic.twitter.com/XjM10eCaVt — Elan Ruskin (@despair) July 18, 2017

Of course, it's more likely that the security bot simply didn't detect the body of water -- which is only slightly below ground-level -- as anything other than solid ground, and so drove straight into it.

The Knightscope's company website says the security robots' "autonomous presence" allows them to "guide themselves through even the most complex environments" -- but not, apparently, bodies of water.

But that didn't stop Twitter going into sci-fi overdrive:

His name was Marvin. pic.twitter.com/fo0FwryjPn — Patrick L. Lee (@patricklee6669) July 17, 2017

straight from the Daleks in Doctor Who pic.twitter.com/eLWn2Pj1gw — Darshan Shankar (@DShankar) July 17, 2017

If you're a security robot and feel suicidal! Please know you can get help! It's not worth ending your life! #securityrobot#dc — Thomas Winzeler (@Theaggiefan1) July 17, 2017

My remembrance moment with Steve the Robot, just last Friday. We were such good friends; he looked so happy and healthy @bilalfarooquipic.twitter.com/JMUzVpw24a — Guillermo Meneses (@Gil_Meneses) July 17, 2017

Someone needs to update the Robot Resources employee manuals. pic.twitter.com/81ThGyrdi8 — Mambo dogface (@SlackerGeorge) July 17, 2017

I don't blame the poor robot. All those human security guards "metal shaming" him ever time he came to work. 👮 The humanity! — Shawn 🌞 Strickland (@Strickalator) July 17, 2017

It's not the first time a Knightscope robot has run into mischief.

In April this year, one of the 136-kilogram security guards was knocked down by a drunk man in Silicon Valley while patrolling the Knightscope offices. And last year, the same kind of robot knocked down and then ran over a toddler at a California mall.

At the time, Knightscope vice president of marketing and sales Stacy Dean Stephens defended the robots as "incredibly safe" -- but not, it would seem, for their own self-preservation.

With predictions that robots will rob a billion humans of their jobs before too long, it's nice to know we can still do some things better.

ALSO ON HUFFPOST AUSTRALIA

in...

Robot Security Guard 'Drowns Itself' In Water Fountain
Security robot 'in critical condition' after nearly drowning on the job

edition.cnn.com · 2017

(CNN) It was one small step for security technology, but one giant leap in the wrong direction for robotkind.

A security robot in Washington -- lovingly named Steve -- plunged down four steps into a fountain Monday.

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

Photos show the sad, waterlogged robot cop partially submerged in defeat. No foul play was involved; Steve simply rolled down a dark path on his own.

It's a fun day here at @gmmb. The super high-tech security robot at our office complex has had a mishap. pic.twitter.com/nhRshrJA9w — Greg Pinelo (@gregpinelo) July 17, 2017

Steve had just started patrolling the Washington Harbour, a riverside complex in Georgetown with restaurants and offices. The Washington Harbour and its real estate developer, MRP Realty, introduced the robot on Facebook on July 12.

The post touts Steve's "extensive catalogue of security capabilities," which apparently does not include any underwater crime-fighting....

Security robot 'in critical condition' after nearly drowning on the job
Washington DC security robot drowns in fountain, internet erupts

stuff.co.nz · 2017

The watery demise of a security robot in Washington, DC was seized on by social media commentators as a stark metaphor for our times.

The K5 autonomous robot was patrolling outside the Washington Harbour office and retail complex on Tuesday (New Zealand time) when it tumbled into the fountain.

Photos posted on social media showed the robot on its side in deep water as people tried to work out how to rescue it.

It's a fun day here at @gmmb. The super high-tech security robot at our office complex has had a mishap. pic.twitter.com/nhRshrJA9w — Greg Pinelo (@gregpinelo) July 17, 2017

READ MORE: Security robot at US mall knocks over toddler and then runs over him

The K5 robot was eventually fished out, but appeared that its patrolling days were over.

It's ok security robot. It's a stressful job, we've all been there. pic.twitter.com/LQbnntbCRm — ✨💖Sparkle Ops💖✨ (@SparkleOps) July 17, 2017

Knightscope, a Silicon Valley start-up, said in a statement that the incident was under investigation, pointing out that no one was hurt.

The company called it "an isolated event" and promised to deliver a new robot for free.

But by then the internet was in irony overload.

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...

Washington DC security robot drowns in fountain, internet erupts
A Robot Security Guard Rolled Its Way Into a Fountain

slate.com · 2017

A Knightscope robot in better days. Knightscope

Robots can do all kinds of things that humans just can’t.

They can sit in the same place for years and weld car parts together with a level of precision that no human can faithfully reproduce. Some smart machines can speak dozens of languages. Others can fly hundreds of feet in the air, surveilling life down below.

But sometimes the biggest challenges for robots are things that we humans take for granted. Like, say, not falling into decorative fountains.

On Monday, a robot security guard from the California-based startup Knightscope fell in a fountain outside of a Washington, D.C., office building. The wheeled robot was making its rounds when it encountered a common feature of manmade environments it’s not built to handle: a fountain with stairs.

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

Knightscope says that this is an isolated incident and that it’s replacing the robot at no charge. Presumably, the robot is equipped with computer vision software that should be able to detect obstacles, like bodies of water, or cars. But clearly, its smart eyes didn’t quite work in this instance, demonstrating how difficult it is for robots to navigate a world built for humans.

Knightscope’s robot is supposed to deter criminals and act as a roving security camera that can call for backup if it senses something has gone awry. But because it’s on wheels, it can’t pursue a human for very long, especially say, if the suspect walks up a flight of stairs. It also seems clear now that a savvy intruder would head to a water trap to evade his mechanical pursuer.

Other robots intended to navigate environments built for people are equally limited. Take the humanoid Pepper made by Softbank. Pepper is supposed to provide customer service in retail settings, like by answering basic questions and helping people find their way around a store. While Pepper is impressive in that it can move its arms and fingers in a remarkably lifelike manner and understand human language, ultimately, its most useful feature is the iPad strapped to its chest.

Same goes for Kuri, a new robot designed to rove around people’s homes. Kuri is cute and all, but like Pepper, it’s pretty limited. It can record what’s happening when you’re out of the house, like if your dog is letting itself out, and it can entertain your kids and remember their faces. But it can’t exactly help out with household chores.

This isn’t the first time a Knightscope robot has acted out of bounds. Last summer, a Knightscope robot was on guard at a mall in California when it rammed into a 16-month-old toddler and ran over one of his feet.

Bilal Farooqui, whose tweet brought the Knightscope robot’s dip in the fountain to widespread attention, referred to it as “suicidal.” But that’s giving the machine too much credit. After all, the robot security guard probably didn’t even realize where it was headed before it took the plunge.

For its part, Knightscope is playing along with the jokes online:...

A Robot Security Guard Rolled Its Way Into a Fountain
Security robot drowns in a fountain

usatoday.com · 2017

CLOSE A security robot drowned in a Georgetown fountain. Time

Guillermo Meneses remembers the good times with Steve, the security robot who tragically died Monday. (Photo: @Gil_Meneses on Twitter)

He was only with us a few days. But, the loss of security robot Steve has been felt far beyond his Washington, D.C., home.

Steve started his job last week at MRP Realty's headquarters. He was just learning his way around, preparing to be fully autonomous in the coming days. Soon, he was patrolling Washington Harbour, a Georgetown business complex, prepared to take down (or record) crime.

But Monday, something horrific happened: Steve toppled over and rolled down four steps into a fountain. People came to his rescue, but not soon enough.

It's a fun day here at @gmmb. The super high-tech security robot at our office complex has had a mishap. pic.twitter.com/nhRshrJA9w — Greg Pinelo (@gregpinelo) July 17, 2017

Some questioned Steve's mental health. Was he suicidal?

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

Knightscope, Steve's maker, set the record straight. He just wanted to go swimming.

BREAKING NEWS: "I heard humans can take a dip in the water in this heat, but robots cannot. I am sorry," said K5 in an official statement. pic.twitter.com/nWC4tubv9w — Knightscope (@iKnightscope) July 18, 2017

What did people love about Steve? He was "totally OK with selfies," the Washington Harbour said during his first days on the job. And he made fast friends.

A favorite from @Gil_Meneses - we know Steve treasured your friendship! pic.twitter.com/juMteQD6Xt — The Wash Harbour (@TheWashHarbour) July 18, 2017

People far and wide are talking about the loss of Steve, even his cousin in Boston. Some have suggested a support group might help.

can we start a support group of sorts? https://t.co/HiNyNDBaiC — Guillermo Meneses (@Gil_Meneses) July 18, 2017

Mourners have created a memorial for Steve at the Harbour.

We can only hope he's rolling around even better sidewalks in the sky. RIP, Steve.

Follow Ashley May on Twitter: @AshleyMayTweets

Read or Share this story: https://usat.ly/2viCMKd...

Security robot drowns in a fountain
That robot that patrols the Pru? One of its brothers fell into a fountain in D.C.

bostonglobe.com · 2017

The robot that patrols the Prudential Center in Boston. The same type of robot recently fell into a fountain in Washington, D.C.

Looks like the type of robot patrolling the Pru isn’t as indestructible as one might think.

The same type of egg-shaped security robot — the Knightscope K5 — “employed” by a development complex in Washington, D.C., apparently fell into a fountain Monday.

One Twitter user said the incident happened at Georgetown’s Washington Harbour, a mixed-use development that sits near the infamous Watergate complex.

Washington Harbour has a robotic security guard patrolling the area, and today, that robot rolled itself directly into a fountain — Ian Winick (@ianwinick) July 17, 2017

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Many shared photos of the robot laying prone in the water before it was rescued, as well as quips related to the incident.

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

Arya Stark: When people ask you what happened here, tell them the North remembers. Tell them winter came for your security robot. pic.twitter.com/ZEz58gT4V7 — Ryan Mac (@RMac18) July 17, 2017

It's a fun day here at @gmmb. The super high-tech security robot at our office complex has had a mishap. pic.twitter.com/nhRshrJA9w — Greg Pinelo (@gregpinelo) July 17, 2017

It's ok security robot. It's a stressful job, we've all been there. pic.twitter.com/LQbnntbCRm — ?Sparkle Ops? (@SparkleOps) July 17, 2017

Get Metro Headlines in your inbox: The 10 top local news stories from metro Boston and around New England delivered daily. Sign Up Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

A Knightscope representative said the D.C. incident was isolated and under investigation, and that no one (save for the robot) was harmed.

“A new robot will be delivered this week at no cost to the Harbour per our service agreement,” the representative said.

Boston shoppers might be pretty familiar with the robot: The same type has been patrolling the Prudential Center in Boston since May. It was introduced there by the security firm Allied Universal, in partnership with Boston Properties, the company that owns and manages the popular shopping destination.

So how exactly does it work, anyway?

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The robot moves at approximately 2 miles per hour, following a mapped-out patrol route within a geo-fenced area and collecting data along the way.

The robot is intended to add an extra layer of protection for patrons, on top of the human security guards already on duty.

“The most encouraging thing about it is that it really can enhance our service delivery and our security program wherever it’s installed,” Caress Kennedy, president of the Northeast region for Allied Universal, told the Globe in May. “It has so many wonderful capabilities and just improves the overall service.”

According to Knightscope’s website, the robot is loaded with high-definition cameras that give it a 360-degree view; it can detect humans nearby and make live or pre-recorded audio announcements to the public.

The robot is also equipped with an emergency call button, so if shoppers need assistance, or are in distress, they can reach a security guard easily.

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Dennis Crowley, senior vice president with Allied’s integrated technology group, previously told the Globe that a similar robot in California recently used its thermal imaging technology to identify a hair curler someone had left on at a boutique kiosk after closing for the night.

The robot alerted security guards at the nearby command center.

“So they were able to prevent a fire,” Crowley said.

Officials could not be reached Tuesday for comment on the D.C. robot.

Steve Annear of the Globe staff and Globe Correspondent Kiana Cole contributed to this report....

That robot that patrols the Pru? One of its brothers fell into a fountain in D.C.
Robot Drowns Itself In Washington D.C. Pool

knowyourmeme.com · 2017

Steve the Robot seemed to be living an idyllic life. Designed and built by the Silicon Valley startup Knightscope Inc. in 2014, the five-foot-tall android had just begun his new job as a security guard in the halls of MRP Realty’s headquarters in Washington D.C. He made friends with all he met, and was loved by all. But on Sunday, Steve was discovered motionless and face down in a fountain, never to enforce security in MRP Realty again.

It is a sad tale, that of a robot brought into this life only to seemingly decide in the span of a week that it wanted no part of it. “What is my purpose?” one imagines Steve asking. “You roam a large facility in Washington D.C. and work in real estate,” his creator would respond, to which Steve, struck with the mind-numbing banality of his life, would let out a soft “Oh my god…”

But Steve's mysterious death by drowning has the internet wondering: was it suicide? Or could it have been… murder?

When the internet discovered Steve in a fountain on Monday, jokes abounded as Twitter's amateur comedians brought out their C material.

But while many Twitter users yucked it up over the loss of Steve, there is evidence suggesting something much more foul transpired. While Knightscope's statement to The Daily Dot assures the public that what happened to Steve did not involve humans, Knightscope notably did not rule out robots. One tweet connected Steve's death to a rival robot in the building whose sole function is to print short stories.

WHAT DID THE STORY SAY ? pic.twitter.com/FjTcE9GM1S — mark mcbride (@mccv) July 17, 2017

Did a silver-tongued robot drive Steve to suicide? At this point, it can not be ruled out, but it's likely the authorities have let this case grow cold. A new robot will be shipped to MP Realty free of charge to take over Steve's post. It better watch its back....

Robot Drowns Itself In Washington D.C. Pool
A Security Robot Called Steve Rolled Into a Pool and Drowned

digitaltrends.com · 2017

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The robot apocalypse is clearly a ways off if news out of Washington, D.C., this week is anything to go by. A security robot working at the Washington Harbour complex in Georgetown met a nasty end when it toppled into a water feature and promptly drowned.

Steve, as this particular Knightscope K5 robot is affectionately known, had only been patrolling his patch since last week but, for reasons currently unknown, ended up taking an unexpected dip in the water, rendering itself utterly useless.

Images posted on social media showed a rather sorry sight, with Steve face down in the fountain, floating in a very un-robot-like way as staff attempted to lift the lifeless bot from its watery grave.

It’s a fun day here at @gmmb. The super high-tech security robot at our office complex has had a mishap. pic.twitter.com/nhRshrJA9w — Greg Pinelo (@gregpinelo) July 17, 2017

Digital Trends’ Kyle Wiggers, who recently met one of Knightscope’s 6-foot, 400-pound K5 robots, described it as “something like a mix between a Dalek from Doctor Who and Eve from Wall-E.” Designed to work alongside human security personnel rather than replace them, the wheel-based K5 comes packed with sensors and cameras designed to help it make sense of its surroundings while at the same time alerting its human counterparts if it spots any suspicious behavior or dodgy characters.

The operator of Washington Harbour was evidently stoked to have Steve keeping an eye on the complex, posting a message on Facebook last week about the “new sheriff in town.”

It added, “We’re super excited to announce our new test pilot security technology … This bot is making his debut at D.C. headquarters this week and has an extensive catalog of security capabilities. He’s currently mapping out the grounds here to be fully autonomous and ready to launch in the upcoming days.”

While Steve’s mapping technology obviously needs some tweaking, Knightscope chose to see the funny side of this week’s mishap.

BREAKING NEWS: “I heard humans can take a dip in the water in this heat, but robots cannot. I am sorry,” said K5 in an official statement. pic.twitter.com/nWC4tubv9w — Knightscope (@iKnightscope) July 18, 2017

It’s not the first time the K5 has unintentionally landed up in the news. Just a few months ago a man apparently assaulted the robot in a Silicon Valley parking lot. Despite being knocked to the ground, the K5 did what it was supposed to do and alerted cops of the assault. The alleged assailant was later arrested.

As for Steve, there’s no word about whether he’s going to be fixed, or indeed if the folks at Washington Harbour will be asking for a replacement anytime soon, though if they do, we suggest they erect a barrier around the fountain beforehand. Either that or teach the K5 to recognize water....

A Security Robot Called Steve Rolled Into a Pool and Drowned
Revealed: how the K5 security robot ended up in a fountain

smh.com.au · 2017

This is probably not the security droid we're looking for.

The egg-shaped robot, known as the K5 Autonomous Data Machine, drew sympathy and jeers on Monday after it stumbled down a set of steps and into a fountain at Washington Harbour, an office and retail complex in the Georgetown neighbourhood in Washington, D.C. The photos were widely shared.

Stairs proved to be the K5's nemesis. Credit:Twitter: @bilalfarooqui

The robot is 1.5 metres tall, weighs 136 kilograms and can travel up to 5 kilometres per hour. It bears a passing resemblance to R2-D2 or perhaps a Dalek.

The K5's pop-culture cousin is clearly RoboCop. It is equipped with, among other things, thermal imaging, automatic license plate recognition and a video camera. Knightscope, the California-based maker of the robot, said its machines can be "an additional set of intelligent eyes and ears" for security and law enforcement. Its clients include data centres, hospitals and shopping malls....

Revealed: how the K5 security robot ended up in a fountain
11 robot fails, flubs, and pratfalls from the past year

zdnet.com · 2018

Boston Dynamics makes some mighty impressive robots. One of them is Atlas, a 6'3" humanoid that made its public debut in 2013 and competed in the DARPA Robotics Challenge.

But during a test exercise last year, video of which Boston Dynamics gamely shared with the world, the robot failed in spectacular fashion. Unable to place a box on a shelf, it ended up pulling the whole shelf down, then toppling over itself.

It's good to know advanced humanoids are people, too....

11 robot fails, flubs, and pratfalls from the past year