I'm Stéphane, a robotics engineer who enjoys teaching these young things to balance and walk. I have developed locomotion software for HRP-4 humanoids and ANYmal quadrupeds. You can find out about the algorithms in the published papers or grab the code on GitHub. I also post technical notes to my blog. Don't hesite to write me by e-mail, answer guaranteed if you use my GPG key.
Locomotion significantly expands what our robots can do. I've been wondering why we don't have abler mobile machines around us already. One reason, I thought at first, is that their control algorithms are designed to track narrow trajectories and they are only as smart as we are good at designing trajectories. We found ways to solve for more general trajectories, but when I developed a walking controller to make the HRP-4 humanoid climb stairs, it turned out they were not a game changer in addressing the more general task.
What helped more was the simplification and tuning of the robot's stabilizer, which is the reflexive part that decides how to react to disturbances (roll the ankle? shift the pelvis? maybe tilt the torso as well?). On HRP-4 all these balancing behaviors were implemented by hand-tuned control systems such as linear feedback and model predictive controllers, but hand tuning is challenging to scale to increasingly complex behaviors. We can do better.
I'm a strong supporter of open access and was fortunate to be able to release my research works as pre-prints and source code for all but a few exceptions. On top of open access, I see three ways in which our robotics community can improve its scientific process: overlay journals, post-prints, and raising our standards in terms of code distribution.