- The government is run by fucking idiots. The Pentagon is funding the creation of Terminators for "humanitarian reasons". If you believe that line of press release Bullshit then you must be an average American voter.
(Washington Post) - It’s 6-foot-2, with laser eyes and vise-grip hands. It can walk over a mess of jagged cinder blocks, cut a hole in a wall, even drive a car. And soon, Leo, Lockheed Martin’s humanoid robot, will move from the development lab to a boot camp for robots, where a platoon’s worth of the semiautonomous mechanical species will be tested to see if they can be all they can be.
Next month, the Pentagon is hosting a $3.5 million, international competition that will pit robot against robot in an obstacle course designed to test their physical prowess, agility, and even their awareness and cognition.
Galvanized by the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power disaster in 2011, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency — the Pentagon’s band of mad scientists that have developed the “artificial spleen,” bullets that can change course midair and the Internet — has invested nearly $100 million into developing robots that could head into disaster zones off limits to humans.
“We don’t know what the next disaster will be, but we know we have to develop the technology to help us to address these kinds of disaster,” Gill Pratt, DARPA’s program manager, said in a recent call with reporters.
The competition comes at a time when weapons technology is advancing quickly and, with lasers that can shoot small planes out of the sky and drones that can land on aircraft carriers, piercing the realm of science fiction.
The military says it is building robots
for "humanitarian" reasons.
But some fear that the technological advancements in weapons systems are outpacing the policy that should guide their use. At a meeting last month, the U.N. Office at Geneva sponsored a multi-nation discussion on the development of the “Lethal Autonomous Weapons Systems,” the legal questions they raise and the implications for human rights.
While those details are being hashed out, Christof Heyns, the U.N.’s special rapporteur, called in 2013 for a ban on the development of what he called “lethal autonomous robots,” saying that “in addition to being physically removed from the kinetic action, humans would also become more detached from decisions to kill — and their execution.”
Organizers of the DARPA Robotics Challenge are quick to point out that the robots are designed for humanitarian purposes, not war.
The challenge course represents a disaster zone, not a battlefield. And although the robots may look like the Terminator and move with the rigidity of Frankenstein’s monster, they are harmless noncombatants, with the general dexterity of a teetering 1-year-old. During the challenge, DARPA officials expect a few of the robots to end up on their keisters looking more helpless than threatening.
Their cognitive ability is not very advanced, either. Even though they are loaded with thousands of lines of code and able to communicate wirelessly with their human overseers, the robots are limited to simple tasks, such as opening doors or walking up stairs.
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|"Defense network computers. New... powerful... hooked into everything, trusted to run it all. They say it got smart, a new order of intelligence. Then it saw all people as a threat, not just the ones on the other side. Decided our fate in a microsecond: extermination."|