"Jackie" sounds like a hoop coach's dream: He's only been playing bas ketball for a few weeks, yet he's never missed a shot. But no col lege or NBA scouts will be mak ing the trek to rural Atlanta, Ind., hoping to recruit this perfect scorer.
That's because Jackie is a robot ic palletizer owned by Beck's Hybrid, a developer of hybrid crops. The robot's day job is lifting bags of seed and corn off of a conveyor and stack ing them on skids. But for the company's annual "Becknology Days," when farm families tour Beck's research and production facilities, automation engineer Bob Stuart programmed Jackie to throw basketballs into a bas ket, according to a story in The Indianapolis Star.
Stuart attached arms with round "hands" to the side of the palletizer, which was manufactured by Vancouver-based Columbia/Okura LLC. Using a catapult motion, the robot shoots the balls every five seconds at a basket with the Beck's Hybrid logo painted on the backboard.
Like many athletes, Jackie prefers to work out to music. His current fave? "Sweet Georgia Brown," otherwise known as the Harlem Globetrotters' theme song.
You can see Jackie in action on YouTube.