Boston Dynamics’ freakish SpotMini is the robodog we secretly want

Online video heavy hitter YouTube is getting into the live video act. According to a blog post on their site, live video ability will be baked right into a coming-soon update of YouTube’s mobile app. We have to note, of course, that YouTube is owned by search giant Google.

For the moment, however, only a select few super-popular YouTubers, like news outlet The Young Turks, will be able to go live on a whim, but expect the live video feature to land on your phone in the very near future.

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Does Uber’s “surge pricing” pop-up game drive you nuts? Us too, so we’re happy to report it’s going to be ending soon. The surge pricing? No, just the way Uber presents it.

According to our friends at TechCrunch, Uber told them that their experience with the exact-fare pricing approach used by UberPool carpoolers was more popular with riders, so that’s going to be how Uber will price out regular rides as well: here’s the fare, no muss, no fuss, no trying to remember your grade school multiplication tables. Uber says the new “transparent” pricing is already rolling out in some cities, so check your app for an update.

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Admittedly, we love the awesome but strangely disconcerting robots churned out by Boston Dynamics, and their newest creation, a new and even more disconcerting robot dog, looks like it’s about ready to hit store shelves. Or, at least, we wish it was. SpotMini, a 55-pound battery-powered canine dog-bot, can duck under a table for scraps and even put away the dirty dishes with its alien-like head-slash-arm attachment. Creepy, we know, but also so cool.

SpotMini can even recycle your empty soda can and if it slips up on some banana peels, no problem, it just uses that crazy arm to rock right back up and play fetch. In the new video there’s a quick shot of SpotMini sporting some more anthropomorphic clothes, making it look more appliance-like than terminator like. Hey, why not just add some fur already?

Google snapped up Boston Dynamics a few years back and nothing much came of it, and the robot maker is reportedly back up for sale, with Toyota showing some interest. But a quiet, obedient robot/alien/dog hybrid that can actually fetch you a beer? Sounds like a home run to us.

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