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DARPA's Robot Challenge Was Like a State Fair Set 50 Years in the Future

Cotton candy? Check. The distinct smell of livestock? Check. Advanced semi-autonomous robots? Check.
June 30, 2015, 2:30pm

Ice cream and cotton candy? Check. The distinct smell of livestock? Check. Advanced semi-autonomous robots? Check.

Welcome to the DARPA Robotics Challenge Finals, where teams behind 23 of the world's most advanced search and rescue robots compete for millions of dollars in prize funding from the US Department of Defense. We had a chance to meet two of these competing teams, both based at Virginia Tech, while filming our documentary

Inhuman Kind
, and we wanted to check in with them and generally soak in the vibes of what could be thought of as Game 7 of the World Series of robotics. It was quite a surreal scene, like something out of an All-American state fair in the year 2065. Which team will come out on top, and which robots will fall under the pressure?