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The NYPD deploys a robot dog again

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Boston Dynamics’ little robot makes another appearance in New York City

Photo illustration by William Joel | Video by Daniel Valls

The cyberpunk dystopia is here! (If you weren’t aware: I’m sorry. You’re living in a cyberpunk dystopia.) The latest sign — aside from corporations controlling many aspects of everyday life, massive widespread wealth inequality, and the recent prominence of bisexual lighting — comes in the form of robot dogs deployed to do jobs human police used to. Yesterday, as the New York Post reports, the NYPD deployed Boston Dynamics’ robot “dog” Spot to a home invasion crime scene in the Bronx.

The video was taken by videographer Daniel Valls, of FreedomNews.tv. You can hear a voice say “that thing is creepy” as the robot prances past the camera. The Post reports that a spokesperson for the NYPD said the robot is in a test phase, presumably to see if it’s actually useful out in the field. (It was equipped with lights and cameras, the spokesperson continued, to ensure that NYPD could see whatever the robot was seeing.)

This isn’t the first time the NYPD has deployed one of Boston Dynamics’ robots. Back in October, the department used another Spot to find a gunman who’d barricaded himself in a building after he’d accidentally shot someone in the head during a parking dispute in Brooklyn.

While I think it’s probably a good thing that robots are being used more often in situations that might be dangerous for a human, it is more than a little unnerving to see the things that happen in books begin to happen in real life.