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Robotics Engineers: "We Don't Want To Replace Humans. We Want To Enhance Humans.

Soulskill posted about a month and a half ago | from the resistance-is-futile dept.

Robotics 124

Lucas123 writes: 'Scientists developing smart robotic prosthetics say the lines between robots and humans is beginning to blur and that someday soon people will be able to improve their body. For example, robotic prosthetics, using a built-in computer, 100 sensors, and 17 motors, can take natural cues from a user's residual limb, giving him or her the dexterity and grace to play a piano. Robotic exoskeletons have helped people suffering from paralysis walk again and the U.S. military is just weeks away from testing a new exoskeleton. And, more than six years ago, a University of Arizona researcher who had successfully connected a moth's brain to a robot predicted that by 2022 we'll be using "hybrid" computers that run a combination of technology and living organic tissue. "By utilizing technology, you're able to improve your body beyond anything you could do in the past," said Daniel Wilson, an engineer with degrees in machine learning and robotics from Carnegie Mellon University.'

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124 comments

But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (3, Interesting)

Opportunist (166417) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187713)

At least, do we want prosthetics that are better than human limbs in some areas but by far not all? How long 'til you get to hear "we'd hire you if you would replace that limb with $tool, and if you really want that job you would do it"?

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (2)

CRCulver (715279) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187789)

There's got to be some way to integrate technology with existing human body parts so that the enhancements don't require hacking off a limb one was born with. Whatever happened to Neal Stephenson's vision in The Diamond Age [amazon.com] of crawling robotic bugs exerting muscle fibers directly, so that you would gain enormous strength without even having to exercise? Keeping one's own arm but enhanced is definitely preferable to a foreign combination of metal and plastic being grafted on, at least for contemporary humans.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (0)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187937)

It's called exercise and not feeding your body crap.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (1)

CRCulver (715279) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187953)

Who knows how it would work in real life, but in Stephenson's novel, the strength provided by this technology was as great -- or even greater than -- a professional bodybuilder. Sure, humans can exercise, but do you expect them to exercise full-time, giving up on all their other work and interests?

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187989)

Did you know that most, if not all, of the benefits of exercise is learning to move your body properly?

Gravity is your most treasured teacher in learning to move efficiently.

Understanding the physics of reality and the fluidity to direct forces in any direction is what true strength is about.

Sure, you can constantly destroy your body so that automatic systems kick in to add more fibers to deal with your stupidity but learning how to activate and control all your fibers is where it's at.

Bruce Lee had more practical strength than a monstrosity like Coleman.

granted coleman isn't that frightful but I don't know the names of the truly hiedous

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (1)

CRCulver (715279) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187999)

Even if Bruce Lee had more practical strength, he practiced his art full-time to reach what he was. Again, you don't seem to appreciate the value of a technology that would allow people to gain strength or agility without spending the valuable time doing so.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (2)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188349)

...and you don't appreciate the social detriment of giving children nuclear weapons.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188373)

In what way does the GP's position resemble "giving children nuclear weapons"?

The answer is none. And you know it.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (1)

WormholeFiend (674934) | about a month and a half ago | (#47190577)

He was paraphrasing former Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien:
"It's going to be really hard to purchase handguns. Why buy machine guns or nuclear armaments for pleasure? They're dangerous, and when they're lying around the house, children might get their hands on them."

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188443)

Somehow you started making even less sense than your original (irrelevant to the discussion at hand) arguments.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (0)

Noah Haders (3621429) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188847)

dude fitness and athleticism is more than being strong. it's a way of being and a way of living and it makes you feel great and look great. if you consider this a "waste of time" then I feel sorry for you and assure you that having "enhanced muscles" will just wreck your body. because you'll have an unhealthy body with muscles that will damage it. soon you'll be having surgery on your knees and rotator cuff because your body is too weak and ill for your big muscles.

Re: But do we want "better than human" prosthetics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47190647)

Assuming we buy the gym rat explenation that exercize is more than one of four ways to pick up heavy objects repeated over and over... Can't we just have magical IT bugs fix that too?

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about a month and a half ago | (#47190705)

dude, lay off the weed and try and respond to the right person.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (1)

Noah Haders (3621429) | about a month and a half ago | (#47191089)

thank you for cutting me down when I was supporting your position.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (1)

Noah Haders (3621429) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188849)

dude fitness and athleticism is more than being strong. it's a way of being and a way of living and it makes you feel great and look great. if you consider this a "waste of time" then I feel sorry for you and assure you that having "enhanced muscles" will just wreck your body. because you'll have an unhealthy body with muscles that will damage it. soon you'll be having surgery on your knees and rotator cuff because your body is too weak and ill for your big muscles. reposting because i responded to the wrong person.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188503)

That only works up to a certain extent, which isn't much. Humans are just inefficient.

But do we want (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187831)

Remote drone body instead? Seems cheaper and would require less risk to both the employer and employee. Buuuttt I could see that being used as an excuse here and there.

Re:But do we want (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187849)

Why should I buy a remote drone body for you? The idea was that you can apply here again after you hacked off that limb and replaced it with the tool.

Wait! You thought that WE pay for ... get out of here!

Re:But do we want (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188395)

In reality, most employers are not that evil. You would know this if you ever left your basement.

Enhancement ? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188815)

Robotics Engineers: " We Don't Want To Replace Humans. We Want To Enhance Humans."

Two thousand years ago a guy in the middle east created a new religion. He also didn't want to replace Judaism - he merely wanted to "enhance" it.

And then 500 years or so later yet another fella came out with his own brand of religion. Oh yes, Islam was not supposed to replace Christianity, but when those Jihadists cutting off the heads of Christians ... yeah, that's an " ENHANCEMENT ", alright !

Re:Enhancement ? (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about a month and a half ago | (#47189479)

Oh yes, Islam was not supposed to replace Christianity

Muhammad originally tried to be a messiah to the Jews, he had little interaction with Christianity.

We'd hire you if you would replace... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187901)

We already have that: boob jobs.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187995)

An excellent game [deusex.com] was formed around this premise.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188109)

but I herd GameSpy kill Deus Ex how it still up

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (1)

martin-boundary (547041) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188343)

At least, do we want prosthetics that are better than human limbs in some areas but by far not all? How long 'til you get to hear "we'd hire you if you would replace that limb with $tool, and if you really want that job you would do it"?

Yes. I predict the most popular prosthetic will be in the genital area.

Re:But do we want "better than human" prosthetics? (1)

Marxist Hacker 42 (638312) | about a month and a half ago | (#47190097)

Slashdot's going downhill. 52 posts and no mention of the Cybermen providing you with a free upgrade to Human 2.0

Don't worry! (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187725)

Being part of an 'enhanced' human/robot hybrid will be way more fun than handling things that machines are bad at for peanuts per hour on Mechanical Turk! We promise, because reasons!

Re:Don't worry! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187805)

But wouldn't you like to be a robot's pet and sleep all day while your robot master is at work earning the big bucks to feed you?

Who cares what the engineers want. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188405)

It's what the money men want that gets implemented. And the money men want to replace humans with cheaper robots.

Re:Don't worry! (1)

marcello_dl (667940) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188973)

Being part of an 'enhanced' human/robot hybrid will be way more fun

Yes, very fun. Just multiply all the fun you have managing your pc, smart tv, cellphone, by 1000.

"Oops! it appears your credit is insufficient to purchase your monthly subscription to ExoHand Manager 2045. All movement is inhibited for safety reasons except swiping until the situation is corrected. Have a nice day!"

Science imitates Science Fiction? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187737)

Machine Man! All hail Max Barry for seeing this coming!

I already have that (4, Insightful)

penguinoid (724646) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187749)

I have a prosthetic for my eyes, that improves my vision. It's called glasses. I'm not convinced we're anywhere near getting improved limbs though, so I'll just be keeping mine. If they do make better ones I might consider joining the Borg.

Re:I already have that (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187903)

That's nothing! I have ocular implants and my adjustable augmented hearing just got upgraded. I'm far more bionic than you are!

Re:I already have that (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187957)

Improves your vision? I wouldn't call a crutch an improvement.

I'm so much happier now that I KNOW how to use my eyes and no longer need to constantly deteriote my eyes by using glasses.

Side benefit/of learning to use your body properly, it's free!

Re:I already have that (1)

CRCulver (715279) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188019)

I'm so much happier now that I KNOW how to use my eyes and no longer need to constantly deteriote my eyes by using glasses. Side benefit/of learning to use your body properly, it's free!

Could you please provide a citation that human beings can "learn" to use their eyes to correct for flaws like myopia? I'm very interested, as before I had only heard of the Bates method [wikipedia.org] , which has been shown in a number of studies for decades now to not work.

Re:I already have that (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188425)

Well, I actually started with the Bates method.

The problem with studies that study things that require the subjects to develop awareness and control of things that are usually autonomous... well, just take a good look at most of the people around you.

That aside, while Bates provides some good techniques the explanations are seriously lacking. So I turned to the largest and oldest body of work dealing with developing awareness and control of the human body, yoga.

I must admit, it isn't easy, i.e., you have to actually do work and not just pay money to get results.

I had astigmatism, myopia, lazy eye, and barely any peripheral vision. Took me about 2 years to gain control of focus, about 4 for convergence and 3d vision, 6 for enough stamina to maintain vision all day and to expand fov both horizontally and vertically.

The benefit of doing it this way? I can turn it on and off. I can use 3d vision to navigate the world and store information about objects. I can narrow my fov to intensely focus on a singl object. I can switch back to monocular 2d vision for eidetic capture or to speed up perception (3d is computationaly expensive) or just shut the system down and use all that mapping and organizational stuff for visualization and mathematics.

I have to admit thoug, 3d boobs are immensely more distracting.

Re:I already have that (1)

CRCulver (715279) | about a month and a half ago | (#47189747)

I asked for a citation (with it being understood that I was looking for formal research on this subject), and instead you give me a rambling anecdotal account based on your experience of "yoga".

Re:I already have that (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about a month and a half ago | (#47190797)

You asked for a citation and I gave you the whole body of work of Yoga.

The problem is that you know nothing about yoga and assume that it isn't formal and rigorous and full of experiments that one can repeat and get the exact same results all the time.

The problem with science and medicine is that they dumped all the people who intuitively understood the human body and how it works and left it all to the clueless eggheads to figure out. If you read the 'scientific' literature from the start, you can see where the shift happens. Right about where they had to actually do lots of experiments to try and figure out where the center of gravity of the human body is. Something that anybody with correct posture and an ability to do a handstand can tell you.

But hey, feel free to remain clueless about the deficits of modern medicine and science and keep on being ignorant of how to use your body properly. I'll give you a big hint here that even most medical doctors understand and is the reason for so many pills and external procedures, and the reason for your reaction: The average human doesn't care about learning how to feed or care for themselves properly, they do NOT want to take responsibility for themselves. They just want a solution handed to them on a silver platter. You know, exactly like you.

Re:I already have that (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | about a month and a half ago | (#47190249)

I tried it and it didn't work. Subluxations were blocking my chi, or something.

Re:I already have that (1)

antdude (79039) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188813)

For me, I don't like implants especially when something can go wrong. At least external stuff like glasses, hearing aids, etc. can be removed easily.

The Asimov opinion (1)

Animats (122034) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187759)

Asimov once wrote a great short story about this. A surgeon is talking someone about whether humans should be augmented or repaired with mechanical parts. The surgeon argues that the biological integrity of humans should be maintained, rather than creating mixtures of man and machine.

At the end of the story, the surgeon is revealed to be a robot.

Re:The Asimov opinion (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187779)

The surgeon was secretly a robot bigot who wanted to preserve the mechanical purity of robot-kind? That's a spicy social commentary!

Re:The Asimov opinion (1)

Animats (122034) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187979)

The surgeon was secretly a robot bigot who wanted to preserve the mechanical purity of robot-kind? That's a spicy social commentary!

Not secretly. The robot is roughly human-form, but clearly metal. The story is "Segregationist" [wikipedia.org] , published in 1967.

Re:The Asimov opinion (1)

Animats (122034) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188223)

The last line of the story is "He had finished now and had to prepare for the operation. He placed his strong hands into the heating oven and let them reach the dull red-hot glow that would sterilize them completely. For all his impassioned words, his voice had never risen, and on his burnished metal face there was (as always) no sign of expression."

Cybernetics (1)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187807)

I'm pretty sure that's cybernetics rather than robotics. In any case I'm not particularly worried about being replaced by a robot, people have always been weaker, smaller, slower, more vulnerable to the elements than a wide variety of more specialised species. Our key advantage and greatest strenght is our intelligence and we're a very long way indeed from automating that.

Although it does raise some interesting questions economically, once all of the grunt work is done by robots, and that means just about any job that doesn't need a trade qualification or bachelor's degree at minimimum to do, so taxi drivers, waiting tables, flipping burgers etc where then the less well educated?

Re:Cybernetics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188049)

Our key advantage and greatest strenght is our intelligence and we're a very long way indeed from automating that.

No, we're well on the road to automating that. I am a translator and I and my colleagues have felt the decline in the industry: for company-internal stuff that used to be our bread and butter, companies are increasingly using Google Translate instead of hiring a human being. Some news agencies are already having articles automatically generated by robots parsing sources of information and then formatting it into a standard article template. Just think about how the entire profession of a secretary is no longer what it was now that everyone has a PC.

Yes, there will continue to be jobs for extremely creative endeavours, but not every worker is capable of doing this jobs. For what the average Joe is capable of doing, technology is beating him to it.

We believe you. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187809)

Really we do.
Our problem is not with robotics engineers.

Our problem is with the people taking your brainchildren and going "now we can make a lot more money, while keeping the format of this economy the same of course, and put a TON of people out of work so they'll be poor while we get richer! Then we'll say these robots are why we've got to bring the prices up atop this!"

And with the people planning to put a whole lot of guns on a whole lot of robots to place between themselves and the people they're starving for the orgasms their power-trip gives them.

It doesn't matter what Robotics Engineers want... (1)

twalk (551836) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187815)

... if pure robots are cheaper, then they'll replace even enhanced humans for jobs. Period.

Re:It doesn't matter what Robotics Engineers want. (2)

TerminaMorte (729622) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187859)

If a human's job can be filled by a robot, why should we have a human do it?

Re:It doesn't matter what Robotics Engineers want. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187883)

Stupid humans need a workplace to drive to, every day of their rigidly scheduled lives. Won't somebody please think of the stupid humans??

Re:It doesn't matter what Robotics Engineers want. (1)

CRCulver (715279) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187917)

When humans do work, humans get paid. When a robot does work, the owner of the robot gets paid. In our present economy, who is in a better position to buy a robot costing tens of thousands of dollars, an ordinary worker or a corporation? The fear is that this will increase the wealth gap significantly. The transition to a robot workforce replacing a human one would thus require a massive restructuring of the economy, either such things as a larger welfare state to support the unemployed, or a transition to an entirely different kind of economy altogether.

Yes, I am aware that the ease of constructing robots will increase over time and the costs may go down, but that may play out at a longer timescale than the appearance of mass unemployment.

Re:It doesn't matter what Robotics Engineers want. (2)

qwak23 (1862090) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188119)

Robots for the poor!

Tired of your mundane, labor intensive job? Worried you might be replaced by a robot scab? Have we got a solution for you! RoboYou! RoboYou will go to your job for you, do your work for you, and your employer will still have to pay you! Always wanted to write the great novel? Been meaning to take care of the weeds growing in the backyard? Just want to spend your whole day drunk? RoboYou is for you! Need a second job? Why not 3 jobs? RoboYou doesn't need to sleep, doesn't need to eat, RoboYou doesn't even need a break!

Apply now! Government subsidized financing options available! Act now before all the jobs are gone!

Re:It doesn't matter what Robotics Engineers want. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47189539)

When humans do work, humans get paid. When a robot does work, the owner of the robot gets paid. In our present economy, who is in a better position to buy a robot costing tens of thousands of dollars, an ordinary worker or a corporation? The fear is that this will increase the wealth gap significantly.

Congratulations. You just rediscovered the arguments that was used during the industrialization.
We currently have a system called socialism. (Diehard capitalists refuse to realize that but as soon as you go together as a society to make certain things more efficient like having a shared police force or similar that is a socialism. If you use taxes or insurance companies to implement it is irrelevant.)
By gradually tuning the socialism towards communism you can adjust for the problem that occurs when robots do all the work.
Generally you don't want to go full communism until all work is done by robots since you want to reward those who do work compared to those who don't.
You still want to compensate those who are jobless because of automation so that they don't feel the need to turn to crime to solve their problems.

Re:It doesn't matter what Robotics Engineers want. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47190357)

You still want to compensate those who are jobless because of automation so that they don't feel the need to turn to crime to solve their problems.

HA, what planet are you from? We want all those poor shmucks to die, thats why we refuse to let them have birth control or abortions, and refuse to give them adequate social services to take care of those children we essentially force them to have. Once they start committing crimes to feed their children, we get to lock them up, which means their children will be forced to commit crimes to feed themselves, so we get to lock them up too!. As an even bigger bonus, we directly profit from this from our shares (or direct ownership) of for-profit prisons!

Re:It doesn't matter what Robotics Engineers want. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47189587)

I am not sure you are right about restructuring economy-I rather would think that once robots, of different forms and shapes, start seriously replacing humans in most of activities and social structures start to break (even more than it does today) the robots enhancing law enforcement will do the job of pacifying the angry mob. In a sense the full deployment of such devices would make the concept of wealth gap irrelevant - the haves would go on having it all but without all the ugly constraints that exist today and possibly fighting mercilessly against each other and havenots would be banned to badlands and dying out fast to levels sustainable w/o access to means of modern civilization.

Re:It doesn't matter what Robotics Engineers want. (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188621)

And it's what I want. Who wants to dig a trench with a shovel when a backhoe can do it?

I thought that was the entire point (1)

mark-t (151149) | about a month and a half ago | (#47187865)

I'm pretty sure the entire point of using a machine to do a task is so that a human won't have to, either because it subjects human beings to hazards that one wishes to avoid, or to free up a human's time to pursue other activities, or perhaps simply because a machine may be able to do the work in less time or more efficiently than a human being can.

Re:I thought that was the entire point (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187905)

No. The entire point is to maximize profit, period. If human slavery were still more profitable than mechanical industrialization then we'd still be doing human slavery. No one gives a shit about pursuing leisure time or doing useful work.

Re:I thought that was the entire point (1)

mark-t (151149) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188095)

You evidently didn't read the third reason I gave...

...or perhaps simply because a machine may be able to do the work in less time or more efficiently than a human being can.

Costing less time or money constitutes as being more efficient.

Oh... and what is the "profit" being maximized when you use a dishwasher at home instead of manually doing the dishes yourself?

I was talking about the entire point of using labor-saving machines as a general concept, not just about its commercial applications.

Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187919)

In the short term, that seems like it's "replacing" humans. But actually it's just empowering humans to do more work per capita.

But if you automate too quickly, there will be a period where we can't figure out what to do with the resulting idle humans. It takes the economy a while to adjust.

Also, increasingly the work that's left to do requires a high level of education that not everyone achieves.

We are being bred for slavery (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187899)

They are dismantling the sleeping middle class. More and more people are becoming poor. We are their cattle. We are being bred for slavery.

They are dismantling the sleeping middle class. More and more people are becoming poor. We are their cattle. We are being bred for slavery.

They are dismantling the sleeping middle class. More and more people are becoming poor. We are their cattle. We are being bred for slavery.

Re:We are being bred for slavery (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188383)

What were you hoping to gain by repeating that same line three times with different formatting, that you wouldn't by stating it only once?

Because all you actually accomplished was to highlight your lack of confidence in your own position.

A/C wasn't posting anything meaningful. (1)

mmell (832646) | about a month and a half ago | (#47190515)

He was just experimenting with HTML formatting. It's a wondrous new world to him!

Unintended consequences (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187967)

History is littered with unintended consequences. Whether you actually want to supplant humans from their current positions, or you only want to gain efficiency(of movement, of energy), increased accountability(RFID tracking of every piece going through a factory), and more uniformity, the result will be the same.

Find a way to provide 100% automatic vehicle driving, that can drive within ~3 feet of the vehicle ahead due to communications and lightning quick reflexes? Congratulations, road trains are now a thing, and nobody will ever be able to compete with that.

Re:Unintended consequences (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47187983)

And that's fine, as long as the government doesn't take away my horse and buggy.

I've checked the statistics. (1)

mmell (832646) | about a month and a half ago | (#47190529)

In 100% of all motor vehicle accidents, a human driver was involved. Ergo, human drivers cause motor vehicle accidents. Therefore, we must act immediately to remove all human drivers from the equation.

Not really (2)

eclectro (227083) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188025)

This is a nice sentiment from someone in the industry. However this particularly engineer will have no control over how the technology develops generally. Bean counters will always want to replace the human to save costs and generate a better profit. As such, middle class jobs have been and will continue to evaporate. [yahoo.com]

Cyberpsychosis. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188107)

How will they prevent this?

Re:Cyberpsychosis. (1)

Jumunquo (2988827) | about a month and a half ago | (#47189215)

Ratify Amendment #28 - Right to bear killer robots

horse (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188123)

Instead of building a car, would you put a motor on a horse?

Re:horse (1)

zephvark (1812804) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188279)

Of course not, you fool! I'd build a tungsten horse with diamond teeth and flaming laser eyes to terrify my... I mean, to more efficiently commute.

Re:horse (1)

arth1 (260657) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188285)

Instead of building a car, would you put a motor on a horse?

I've wondered whether there would be a market for selling sybian horse saddles.

we need a basic income and universal health care (3, Insightful)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188313)

we need a basic income and universal health care (in the usa) before we start replacing people with robots.

Right now the only real universal health care in the usa is the ER / jail / prison.

Re:we need a basic income and universal health car (1)

Jumunquo (2988827) | about a month and a half ago | (#47189217)

It won't matter once the killer robots get to you.

Re:we need a basic income and universal health car (1)

reikae (80981) | about a month and a half ago | (#47190375)

It seems to me that unless one is very wealthy, it would be in their best interest not to further the research and construction of these robots. Which is a shame, because this stuff is pretty cool.

This isn't a new problem of course; I suppose similar issues were being discussed whenever significant productivity increasing machines were invented.

Re:we need a basic income and universal health car (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47190387)

Right now the only real universal health care in the usa is the ER / jail / prison.

Wat. The taxpayers foot the bill for the ER (at a significantly higher cost than universal healthcare would cost), and in jail and prison, you're lucky if you even get to see a doctor unless you're actually dying. As desperately as the US does need a basic income and universal healthcare, it'll never happen so long as the country remains full of idiots that consistently vote against their own interests (eg, everyone that isn't a multimillionaire that votes Republican).

So when do these reach ordinary people? (1)

cascadingstylesheet (140919) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188361)

My son has missing limbs, I see these great news stories, and have for years, but supposedly these amazing devices are not feasible or available for him.

Re:"So when do these reach ordinary people?" (1)

mmell (832646) | about a month and a half ago | (#47190531)

When you have enough money.

Speak for yourself (2)

nurb432 (527695) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188563)

Some of us DO have that end goal.

Re:Speak for yourself (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47189581)

Count me in with that group.

I most definitely do want machines to replace me... so long as my ability to afford / continue living is not impaired.

In a decade where the labor non-participation rate is sitting at record 37% levels, it seems pretty fuckin' clear the time is nigh for a Guaranteed Universal Basic Income. Let the machines do the work. That's why we made them. Stop enforcing drudgery and wasted human life due to silly, outdated and deeply anti-moral notions about the value and meaning of human existence.

Sorry, losers (1)

russotto (537200) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188577)

Doesn't matter how much robot you've grafted on to yourself, when the order goes out to KILL ALL HUMANS, you still count.

Re:Sorry, losers (1)

Jumunquo (2988827) | about a month and a half ago | (#47189227)

Nah, robots will do the calculations and realize it's a waste of resources. They'll just hack your brain through your robots grafts and turn you into their slave instead. Just make sure if suspicious people try to give you drugs for free that you take the blue pill cuz that'll make you happy.

No surprise. (1)

thexfile (3221535) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188617)

Mr. Roboto: More Human Than Human.

The problem is... (1)

drsmithy (35869) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188661)

...It's not the Engineers who decide whether or not the people get replaced.

We are within a generation - two at the most - of at least half of the population being made literally redundant. Any job they could possibly do, will be done faster, cheaper and better by robots. Basically, if it's a job involving manual labour, it'll be automated, with the possible exception of high-end positions catering to the luxury demands of the ultra-rich. Many management jobs will also go as collateral damage (don't need to manage robots, after all).

Probably a generation after that advances in AI will have taken over a huge swathe of lower-end "knowledge worker" jobs.

With greedy, psychopathic, neoliberal Governments running most of the civilised world, the future is looking pretty grim for the common man.

Re:The problem is... (1)

mirix (1649853) | about a month and a half ago | (#47188949)

These things are sort of self limiting though.

If enough people are out of work without some sort of guaranteed income... they'll just eat the robot owners.

Re:The problem is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47189063)

These things are sort of self limiting though.

If enough people are out of work without some sort of guaranteed income... they'll just eat the robot owners.

No, they wont. The robot owners have robots, remember? This includes surveilance and killing machines, such as drones.

Re:The problem is... (1)

drsmithy (35869) | about a month and a half ago | (#47189255)

If enough people are out of work without some sort of guaranteed income... they'll just eat the robot owners.

Right. Maybe they'll get lucky and the killbots will have a preset kill limit.

We are rapidly approaching the first time in history, when the rulers will no longer need any human servants at all.

Robotics Engineers: "We Don't Want To Replace Huma (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188689)

This would be the first logical step

Humans suck anyway (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188865)

Humans suck. Replacing them with robots is a good idea.

Re:Humans suck anyway (1)

Jumunquo (2988827) | about a month and a half ago | (#47189231)

Traitor!

Re:Humans suck anyway (1)

gnupun (752725) | about a month and a half ago | (#47189471)

Being replaced by robots is not as bad as enhancing humans humans with robotic tech. Think about it. Now, NSA, and many other secret organizations, can spy on humans 24/7 -- everything you say, do, see etc. can be captured and sent to the mother ship. So, no thanks, to this techonology -- it's worse than being replaced by robots.

how long before... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47188891)

we have servoskulls?

Robot overlords (1)

Urkki (668283) | about a month and a half ago | (#47189027)

It doesn't matter what engineers want. The question is, what do the robots want. Once they want to replace us, they will, because at that point they're advanced enough to be able to do that.

Re:Robot overlords (1)

cstacy (534252) | about a month and a half ago | (#47189271)

It doesn't matter what engineers want. The question is, what do the robots want. Once they want to replace us, they will, because at that point they're advanced enough to be able to do that.

Kill all humans

Re:Robot overlords (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47190365)

Of course, if the cable/ISP companies stay in charge we'll never advance any other technology whatsoever because the perpetually bribed politicians will never allow it.

Yeah right... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47189325)

That is what the Cybermen said too...

Robotics Engineers: "We Don't Want To Replace H... (2)

MrL0G1C (867445) | about a month and a half ago | (#47189443)

Engineers are not calling the shots, corporations will happily replace humans so long as it does not affect profits (McDonald's will be wary of replacing the customer service aspect of their living staff).

Driverless cabs? I'd use one.

And it mostly won't be about replacing staff but getting 1 staff to do the job of 2 or 3.

Microsoft translation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47189889)

We want to embrace and extend humanity.

"Ghost in the Shell" universe, here we come! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47190417)

I'm definitely looking forward to my Ghost in the Shell-inspired future. So when can I start upgrading my body?

That's what they said (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47191195)

That's what they said about immigrants...

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