Jump directly to the Content
Jump directly to the Content

Sermon Illustrations

Home > Sermon Illustrations

High-Tech Security Robot Falls down Stairs and into Fountain

One of the internet's more recent victims of notoriety was not a person, animal, or airline—but rather a security robot.

The K5 Autonomous Data Machine—which is "five feet tall, weighs 300 pounds, and can travel up to 3 miles per hour," according to the New York Times—contains tools to help law enforcement and security officers at places like malls or hospitals.

For one K5 in Washington, D.C.'s Washington Harbour complex, however, a flight of stairs somehow proved to be too much. It "stumbled down a set of steps and into a fountain," and the inevitable pictures and video that were captured after the incident—of a lone robot lying in the fountain pool—stormed social media.

Knightscope, the company that makes the robots, took it in stride, tweeting out a "statement" from the K5: "I heard humans can take a dip in the water in this heat, but robots cannot. I am sorry."

But what caused such a sophisticated robot to trip and fall? Engineering and interactive media professor Michael Bailey-Van Kuren offered this rather straightforward explanation: "Like with any technology, you can have a fault condition and an error can occur." But he did remark that the K5's sensor failure was an "anomaly."

Potential Preaching Angles: We could see this story as a warning against trusting too much in the power of our fallible human creations—but also, isn't it pretty easy to relate to this little robot that experienced faulty conditions and errors, that should've detected some stairs but didn't? How often do we find ourselves—for some reason—doing what we know we shouldn't?

Related Sermon Illustrations

Succeeding Because of the 'Advantage of Disadvantages'

In his book David and Goliath, Malcolm Gladwell documents the lives of many successful leaders and entrepreneurs who succeed not in spite of challenges and suffering in life but because ...

[Read More]

Distracted Man on Scooter Drives into Sinkhole

It's like a scene out of an action movie: one moment, the city street seems calm and ordinary, and in the next moment, the asphalt and concrete crumble away, revealing a giant, gaping ...

[Read More]