This ping pong bot is so good it doesn’t even need to watch the ball, it just—OH MY GOD IT’S EYEING THE CHILD.

This advertisement for Omron Automation & Safety spends the majority of its one-minute duration teasing the viewer with glimpses of an automated ping-pong bot. When the full-frame reveal happens at the 53 second mark, we expect a friendly looking opponent. Instead, we see a towering, tripedal machine in attack stance, its hulking head lowered halfway across the table in what looks to be a rather menacing stare-down:

The title of the advertisement is “Can automation make people happy?” At Boing Boing, Andrea James asks more pressing questions: “What happens to the humans when they lose? Are they used as fuel for the ping pong robot? Or are they used as fuel for the robot that makes more ping pong robots?”


Contact the author at rtgonzalez@io9.com.

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