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Walk Like a Reptilian.
Yim pulls the snake apart and joins the modules together again in an H shape, snapping a three-centimeter plastic leg onto each of the H’s corners. “It recognizes that it has four legs, so now the brain commands it to move like a four-legged animal,” he says. The motions are patterned after a lizard’s walk, Yim explains, bending from side to side at the waist to help push his hands alternately above his head, alligator-fashion-a trick that allows the robot to move using only five motors, rather than the eight most four-legged robots require. The headless quadruped marches briskly across the table; Yim snatches it back up before it can tumble over the side.

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