Do Killer Robots Seem Like A Great Idea To ANYONE??!

actionnowwords-01

This week in robot news, talk has turned to killer robots.

The Campaign to Stop Killer Robots have been voicing their concern for years. And they’re finding that the UN’s Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons seem to be doing little more than “having talks” on the issue. And somewhat like coming to a film/media student for information on robotics/economics, that really doesn’t seem like it’s gonna help. Even if she’s the only one that finds a way to relate Monty Python to pertinent issues.

But I digress. Here’s an idea for an action that might get them started; put a stop to the military’s development of machines that can autonomously track and kill people. Because those sound absolutely wretched. The solution to men and women dying in wars is not sending machines in their place, it’s chilling out on the war.

The whole situation is more complicated.. I realise that. But here’s the thing, when the very thought of something makes your skin crawl and reminds you of every dystopian future you’ve ever nightmared about MAYBE DON’T BRING IT TO LIFE.

Sexbots over deathbots. That should be our chant when we rally.

Shayni Notelovitz

A Sex Robot Won’t Give You Syphilis

android

I’m not saying every prostitute will. That would be a generalisation. And I haven’t done enough research into the sexual health of prostitutes to make a definitive claim… I’m just saying it’s possible.

So sex robots are a thing, almost. I mean they’ll very soon be a very big thing. And it’s no doubt going to cause a total reworking of the prostitution trade.

A few things to consider…

  1. A sex robot wouldn’t carry disease.
  2. It would, theoretically, be down with whatever. Got a weird toe thing? No judgment from the android.
  3. It could be designed to be physically perfect.
  4. It would probably be much better at it than humans. No insecurities about uncultivated manscape. Doesn’t stop until you tell it to. Will tell you on cue that you’re “the biggest she’s ever seen” without a hint of sarcasm, and additionally, without bursting into hysterical laughter before she even gets the sentence out …That kinda thing…

But before you perves start lining up there are some other things to consider. For instance, how would the market be navigated with regard to pedophilia and child-bots? And at what level of robotic sentience would the entire thing become exploitative? How would these machines be dealt with in countries that haven’t legalised prostitution? Do any of us even think it’s not insanely creepy to have sex with an android, or is it really just a glamourised vibrator?

On another note- this is a brilliant topic to bring up when there’s an uncomfortable lapse in conversation at a party, especially a shnazzy party. Like one without paper plates. Take it from this undisputed social queen. Never fails.

Always fails.

That’s why it’s brilliant.

Blog’s starting to get weird eh.

This article talks through the whole issue in much more civilised terms if you’d like to hear the actual story

Shayni Notelovitz

The Human-Machine Connection

Initial thoughts, this thing is goddam adorable. And I think possibly all my problems could be solved if it would just tell me it loved me. But after the momentary hysteria settled I began to question the idea at the heart of this strange commercial. The notion that a human might have an emotional connection to a machine.

With regard to jobs, we hear a lot about the idea of collaborating with robots, and that this will be the future of our workforce. But could we collaborate in the same way with a robotic mind? The camaraderie and collective motivation that exists in many workplaces seem like they might be the very ingredients that have brought about some of the greatest human creations to date. Discovery, design, art, invention… that cinematic moment we all know so well where the group bands together and achieves something incredible, and it gives you goosebumps and makes you want to become a Mighty Duck. How would this work if our co-conspirators were non-human?

And on another level.. how much would it change the very nature of the human experience if we were no longer the builders of our world? If everything was outsourced… wouldn’t there be a sense that we were no longer the designers of our space, even if the robots weren’t out of our control. Isn’t there something to humans being responsible for our own environment?

Shayni Notelovitz

What to do with your time once you’re unemployed

John C Bullas kills, dries and artfully positions flies when he's bored...
John C Bullas kills, dries and artfully positions flies when he’s bored…

Seeing as preparedness is key, I’ve compiled a list of some of the best things you can do with your time once you’re unemployed.

  • Find a corporate entity that you don’t particularly like and TAKE THEM DOWN.
  • A friend told me a story about a mysterious panther that has been spotted off a walking trail in Wollongong. Conduct a mission to locate it. But voyage at your own peril. I will not be held responsible when the panther gouges out a section of your upper thigh.
  • Shoot a time-lapse in as many different cities as you can drag your jobless ass through.
  • Volunteer your time teaching a class in something you’re good at. Even if it’s something rather silly. Here are a few I’d sign up for in a heartbeat:
      • Whistling, for those that still can’t and have tried EVERYFUCKINGTHING.
      • Understanding Inception, a detailed workshop series explaining the science behind sci-fi films. In such a class, one should be allowed to ask as many questions as they like and never be called stupid.
      • Hashtagging For Beginners, #dos and #donts? #dosanddonts? #dosand #donts?
      • The Science Behind Beat Boxing. An in-depth study of the vocal cords allowing students an insight into how it is possible to have two voices without being possessed. Spoiler: IT’S NOT.
  • Devote your life to engineering a perfect scent, the greatest perfume of all time. Call it Elon. Post the formula online in the name of open sourcing.
  • Adopt more puppies than you could ever have imagined caring for. Spend all the days rolling around on the floor with them.
  • Perform some extensive research into Eggs Benedict Cumberbatch’s family history. Lady needs a recipe.
  • Dig deep into your dark, dark soul and ignite a spark of altruism. Volunteer some time aiding the less fortunate.
  • Wolfpack it… Gather your pals, learn the lines to your favourite films and recreate them. If completed with the necessary attention to detail, this can take decades.
  • Rush small children on the street and preach to them about the technologies of old. Carry a printed newspaper just so you can fling it at them while making your point. Be sure to collect said newspaper after flinging. Lord knows if you’ll ever find another.
  • Study something, just for the heck of it.
  • Become a conspiracy nut. You’ll get to put together one of those “mad-guy” pin boards with scratchy lines of red marker that connect important clues and take shaky hand-held video footage outside the gates of government facilities. Dammit thats a good one.

Shayni Notelovitz

Basic Income

steve hughes

Steve Hughes is not only a classy, classy man but also an economic trailblazer.. read on as I prove it with a level of finesse only previously achieved by Russian gymnast Svetlana Khorkina. There is no need to follow that link it is completely irrelevant.

I touched briefly on the idea of allocating a universal basic income. This seems to be the only viable solution if we’re all pushed out of the workforce. It also sounds like a really good bloody time. There is enough wealth to go around, we know this. It’s just about distributing it in sensible ways. And having a little faith in ourselves to live meaningful lives even if we don’t have a 9 to 5 from which to gage our entire identity. You are more than your LinkedIn profile. I believe in you. Drum circle on the beach, WHO IS IN?

This is a recent Huffington Post article which will prove that I’m not talking nonsense.

In case you’re too lazy to click the link I am copying in one of the author’s more pertinent insights because I’m just such a sweetheart.

“By redirecting that money pooling at the top doing comparatively very little, accumulating in ever increasing amounts through continual redistribution upwards from the bottom and the middle of the income spectrum, and recirculating that clotted money back down to the bottom and middle, this would actually expand the entire economy while making it more sustainable and more inclusive. This is how the body works. This is how engines work. This is how systems work.”

Here’s another piece regarding robotic shenanigans that you should at the very least scan.

Shayni Notelovitz

An Introductory Rant

Humans are quickly becoming redundant. The rise in automation will see an unprecedented level of unemployment. From truck drivers to doctors, no one’s job is safe. And with the exponential rates of development in technology, the influx of intelligent machines is going to hit us far sooner than we care to imagine.

What I’m suggesting is not a revolt against technological advancement. Would there not be more merit in coming to terms with the not so awful idea that there is no need for every person to have employment? When Kodak and it’s 145,000 employees were usurped by Instagram’s 13 there was a major lesson to be learned.

See 

Very clever man.

The way to make such a system economically viable for the rest of us; a basic income. Governments heavily tax corporate entities, try very, very hard to resist their corrupt inclinations (robots can no doubt assist in policing this) and distribute the money amongst the entire population as a sort of unconditional welfare payment. The idea has already been seriously considered, with Switzerland’s government coming very close to passing a law for basic income. And you know if the Swiss are thinking about it it’s probably a good idea.

While the proposition obviously requires a change in policy it also requires, more fundamentally a change in mindset. Perhaps the purpose of life is closer to achieving a state of being in which robots are in fact doing all the work and society is allowed the time and the means with which to do whatever else it is they might, conquering the rubix cube, reading Plato, mastering the art of Tai Chi, for instance.

There seems to be a persisting idea that the purpose of our homogenised lives is to work, consistently, for an income with which we can purchase all the things we do or, more likely, don’t need. Just because this is the way things have always been does not necessarily mean it needs to continue.

Buckminster Fuller said it best about 40 years ago:

“We should do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest… We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian-Darwinian theory, he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living.”

Shayni Notelovitz