“Perhaps the most nightmarish, dystopian film of 2017 didn’t come from Hollywood. Autonomous weapons critics, led by a college professor, put together a horror show.
“It’s a seven-minute video, a collaboration between University of California-Berkeley professor Stuart Russell and the Future of Life Institute that shows a future in which palm-sized, autonomous drones use facial recognition technology and on-board explosives to commit untraceable massacres.
“The film is the researchers’ latest attempt to build support for a global ban on autonomous weapon systems, which kill without meaningful human control.
“They released the video to coincide with meetings the United Nations’ Convention on Conventional Weapons is holding this week in Geneva, Switzerland, to discuss autonomous weapons.
“‘We have an opportunity to prevent the future you just saw, but the window to act is closing fast,’ said Russell, an artificial intelligence professor, at the film’s conclusion. ‘Allowing machines to choose to kill humans will be devastating to our security and freedom.’
“In the film, thousands of college students are killed in attacks at a dozen universities after drones swarm campuses. Some of the drones first attach to buildings, blowing holes in walls so other drones can enter and hunt down specific students. A similar scene is shown at the U.S. Capitol, where a select group of Senators were killed.
“Such atrocities aren’t possible today, but given the trajectory of tech’s development, that will change in the future. The researchers warn that several powerful nations are moving toward autonomous weapons, and if one nation deploys such weapons, it may trigger a global arms race to keep up.”
“…the carbon dioxide we breathe out originally came from the air, so when we exhale we’re simply putting it back from whence it came: we are part of a continuous carbon cycle, we are not adding new carbon. The same is true for anything that respires, including cows, each of which breathes out a whopping 10kg of carbon dioxide per day! So whether you are a cow, dog, human, ant or elephant, your breathing does not increase CO2 in the atmosphere.”
“AJ+’s documentary series on automation explores how advancements in artificial intelligence, robotics, machine learning and automated vehicles will affect jobs, cities and inequality. From trucking to radiology, new technology is already changing white collar and blue collar occupations, reshaping cities and concentrating wealth in the hands of the few. Robots are taking over the world as companies like Tesla, Amazon, Uber and Google are using robots to automate.”
“The dynamics of this decline are precisely those of a gold mine. The fist-sized nuggets have all been found, the gravel and sand is getting more expensive to recover, and soon there will be nothing but dust.”
If you haven’t seen this video, which has been around for a few years now, do yourself a favor and watch it. Al Bartlett is a pleasure to listen to and compared to the loons on both sides of the energy and economy discussions (fossil fuels vs ‘going green’, growth vs sustainability) he may be the only one worth listening to.