It’s been a long time coming, mainly since whenever you saw James Cameron’s Aliens and were wowed by Ripley kicking queen alien butt using the power loader. But, while not quite as badass as the Caterpillar P-5000 Work Loader, it goes a little way to getting there. It’s called, not very imaginatively, Power Loader and is currently being developed by a company called Activelink.
It’s a human-augmenting exoskeleton that currently allows the user to carry 30 kilograms (about 60 pounds, or the weight of a small child) with one arm without breaking a sweat, and will probably be used for mundane activities in warehouses. Rather than, say, fighting an endoparasitoid extraterrestrial species (thanks, Wikipedia!) or used to turn the average person into a superhero. But give it a few years and maybe we’ll see a new TV series where people wear these and fight it out to win a new (internet connected) fridge freezer or something.