|"Listen, and understand! That Terminator is out there! It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead."|
Yes, we are that fucking stupid.
- Insane military and civilian scientists are working overtime to create artificial intelligence and warrior robots. All that remains is for the Pentagon to create a new department called Skynet.
Self-guided unmanned patrol boats that can leave warships they're protecting and swarm and attack potential threats on the water could join the Navy's fleet within a year, defense officials say, adding the new technology could one day help stop attacks like the deadly 2000 bombing of the USS Cole off Yemen.
The Arlington-based Office of Naval Research demonstrated the autonomous swarm boat technology over two weeks in August on the James River near Fort Eustis in Virginia - not far from one of the Navy's largest fleet concentration areas. It said the Navy simulated a transit through a strait, just like the routine passage of U.S. warships through the Strait of Hormuz in the Persian Gulf reports the Associated Press.
|Unmanned and self-guided Terminator warships.|
What could possibly go wrong?
In the demonstrations, as many as 13 small unmanned patrol boats were escorting a high-value Navy ship. Then as many as eight of the self-guided vessels broke off and swarmed around a threat when a ship playing the part of an enemy vessel was detected, the office said, calling the demonstrations a success.
Robert Brizzolara, program manager at the Office of Naval Research, said that the boats can decide for themselves what movements to make once they're alerted to a threat and work together to encircle or block the path of an opposing vessel, depending on that vessel's movements and those of other nearby vessels.
The rigid-hull inflatable patrol boats can also fire .50 caliber machine guns if called upon to do so. However, a human will always be the one to make the decision to use lethal force, officials said. A sailor on a command ship would be in charge of each of the unmanned boats and could take control over any of the boats at any moment.
Prophets Of Doom - Technology
At some point the self-aware machines we build will
decide that humans are no longer needed.
Human jobs vanish and you are terminated for not paying late fees.
(Wall Street Journal) - They have blinking eyes and an unnerving way of looking quizzically in the direction of whoever is speaking. They walk, dance and can talk in 19 different languages. About the height of a toddler, they look like bigger, better-dressed cousins of Buzz Lightyear.
And soon, "Vincent" and "Nancy" will be buzzing around the Westport Public Library, where officials next week will announce the recent acquisition of the pair of humanoid "NAO Evolution" robots. Their primary purpose: to teach the kind of coding and computer-programming skills required to animate such machines.
While it isn't unusual for public libraries to offer instruction in programming or robotics, Westport is the first in the nation to do it with sophisticated humanoid bots made by the French robotics firm Aldebaran. In a brief demonstration last week, Alex Giannini, the library's digital-experience manager, had Vincent kicking a small soccer ball, doing tai chi and taking bows.
"Robotics is the next disruptive technology coming into our lives and we felt it was important to make it accessible to people so they could learn about it," said Maxine Bleiweis, executive director of the Westport Library. "From an economic-development perspective and job- and career-development perspective, it's so important."
|Will Terminator Funeral Directors be next?|
Westport isn't the only public library with robots. In May, the Chicago Public Library, in partnership with Google Inc. GOOGL in Your Value Your Change Short position made 500 "Finch" robots available to patrons at six of its branches. The dot-eyed, half-domed machines, the size of dinner plate on wheels, are also used to teach computer programming and coding.
Aldebaran said it has sold about 6,000 robots world-wide, mostly to museums and schools. At nearly $8,000 a machine, the NAO Evolution models, which were acquired by Westport with private funds, cost considerably more than the Finch machines, which run $99 each.
But the Aldebaran robots are also more complex—equipped with two cameras, four microphones, motion sensors and sonar to detect walls.
Vincent and Nancy can recognize faces and detect where sound is coming from. They have a "fall manager" that helps them right themselves after a tumble just as a human might, grunts and all. They can even "touch" and "feel" with the help of tactile and pressure sensors.
The robots come equipped with programming software, but embedded within that software are compatible programming languages, such as Python, that can be used to expand the capabilities of the NAO bots. Aldebaran also has a large development community continuously adding new behavior apps that facilitate everything from high-five gestures to a "wake-up" routine including yawning and stretching.
"They look like Sharper Image playthings, but they're insanely complicated," said Mr. Giannini.
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