At TechfestNW on March 24,  Jonathan Hurst, the chair of the Robotics Department at Oregon State University and the co-founder of Agility Robotics, described a robot that he and his crew have built that's perhaps more adroit than any other robot in the world.

Meet Cassie, who may soon be your mailman, your personal bellhop, and your bomb-sniffing dog.

Hurst who holds a B.S. in mechanical engineering and an M.S. and Ph.D. in robotics, all from Carnegie Mellon University, has been studying "legged locomotion" for his entire career.

Here are three highlights from his wonderfully wonky talk.

Audience Question: I was thinking about what you said about our evolution and I was like why the chicken? Why not a human gait? Are there differences with the dynamics of movement from four legs vs. two and if you've looked at that?


Audience Question: What do you think about the future of this technology in terms of commercial use of it? 


Jonathan Hurst on robotic mobility: 

“When you can press your Amazon buy button and two hours later it shows up at your door and the shipping is next to free and just about everything you could want or need is available that way, it entirely changes how people shop; it changes commerce and that in turn starts to changes traffic patterns and energy use and the way our cities are built. It’s going to have a major impact.”