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Are Robots the Future of Disneyland Characters?

Has Disney really conquered the science of sentient AI?

Credit: Walt Disney Imagineering / YouTube

Disney has long been a pioneer of science, utilizing cutting-edge technology to enhance the magic – and dazzle the visitors – of its many worldwide parks. 

And never one to follow, always to lead, Disney has been amazing people with the work of their Imagineers, essentially the scientific wing of the titan company, by recently unveiling the product of three years hard work and innovation: a 3 foot-tall robot Baby Groot.

The mobility of the latest robotic cast member has blown people away, but simultaneously created a sense of concern amongst Twitter users. The main concern is whether Disney plans to replace all employees, including cast members, with AI robotic doubles.

Many Twitter users voiced their concerns, ranging from reasonable hesitancy as to the warmth and charisma of the robots, to concerns that it could lead to Westworld levels of disaster.

Others quoted fan-favorite Ian Malcolm (played by Jeff Goldblum) from Jurassic Park, questioning whether the fact a scientist can do something if it means that they should.

However, if sentient robots are people’s main concern; there really is no concern. AI is years away from that level of technology, and Disney has reaffirmed that it has no plans of replacing human cast members with robotic counterparts. The robots will join the cast for characters that, due to size, would be difficult to cast with real people – think small characters like Baby Yoda, or collossal ones like the Hulk. 

Once you get past the Westworld anxiety or the fear of the Skynet takeover, modern robotics is making incredible – and in my opinion extremely exciting – progress! Just recently, I saw a video on Facebook where Boston Dynamics had robots complete an obstacle course, which I’ll include below. 

And on the other side of the world, Disneyland Japan has incredible animatronics for a Beauty and the Beast attraction that opened in 2020.

I know what my priority for the next trip to Japan is! 

However, the only thing that does concern me that this endeavor could potentially end in chaos, is that a Twitter user pointed out that The Simpsons have ‘predicted’ it.

Yikes. Now that is pretty damning. 

Find the Imagineers video on the new Groot robot below, and prepare to be blown away by the adorableness!


Read More: The Ring of Silvianus: The Roman Ring Thought to Have Inspired ‘The Lord of The Rings’

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