Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos stepped into a giant robotic suit at a private conference for automation enthusiasts.
Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos seems to like robots. After all, thousands of them help haul merchandise across his company’s warehouses and soon might be zipping through the air to deliver packages.
But the machine that Bezos climbed into during a private, Amazon-organized annual conference for robotics enthusiasts in Palm Springs, Calif. was pure fun: a giant robot straight out of the land of Japanimation.
From the look of glee on the executive’s face in a picture posted on his Twitter feed, piloting that beast must’ve been more fun than poring over quarterly earning statements, no matter how Amazon’s growth has been booming.
Other participants in the MARS (machine learning, home automation, robotics and space exploration) 2017 conference also took to Twitter to describe the moment. One tweet shows a video of Bezos flapping the robot’s arms around and asking “Why do I feel so much like Sigourney Weaver?” That’s a reference to the star of the space horror series “Alien,” in which Weaver appears clad in robotic armor as she fights off evil monsters.
Fun aside, both robotics and home automation are close to the heart of Bezos and the e-commerce giant he created. This interest has manifested itself in highly automated fulfillment centers, in algorithms that predict shopper behavior, and a voice-activated user interface dubbed Alexa, that in addition to talking back to its owners helps them automate their homes.