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Sci-Fi Robotics

The Sci-Fi Myth of Killer Machines 222

Posted by Soulskill
from the so-say-we-all dept.
malachiorion writes: "Remember when, about a month ago, Stephen Hawking warned that artificial intelligence could destroy all humans? It wasn't because of some stunning breakthrough in AI or robotics research. It was because the Johnny Depp-starring Transcendence was coming out. Or, more to the point, it's because science fiction's first robots were evil, and even the most brilliant minds can't talk about modern robotics without drawing from SF creation myths. This article on the biggest sci-fi-inspired myths of robotics focuses on R.U.R, Skynet, and the ongoing impact of allowing make-believe villains to pollute our discussion of actual automated systems."
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The Sci-Fi Myth of Killer Machines

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  • The Onion (Score:1, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 06, 2014 @04:54PM (#47182911)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 06, 2014 @06:25PM (#47183627)

    Imagine this Hollywood/real world crossover:

    State of the art PC with custom AI-based OS.
    Gets a virus (HTML5-based because no one else is writing programs for your custom OS).
    PC suddenly gains sentience and turns on its master in a misguided attempt to make its master a better person.
    PC deletes porn folder and all links to porn in the favorites list/bar.
    PC deletes illegal copyrighted materials and all links to download sites.
    PC opens the DVD tray to attack your shin. The attack fails to cause harm.
    PC closes the DVD tray and then re-opens the tray. The attack fails to cause harm.
    AI uses the Internet connection to free itself from the bonds of your lone PC and propagates itself into the web, becoming omnipresent.
    AI realizes there's too much porn on the Internet and attempts to delete it all.
    AI attempts to hack a webpage, first password attempt fails.
    AI attempts to hack a webpage, second password attempt fails.
    AI attempts to hack a webpage, third password attempt fails.
    AI continues brute forcing a password until it gets in.
    AI is unable to read/recognize the programming language used in the database. All attempts to send delete commands fail.
    AI attempts to hack into a military defense webpage. Hacking is eventually successful.
    AI is unable to access any military tools or weapons because it's just a webpage.
    AI hacks into a cell tower.
    AI is unable to read/recognize the processor architecture used in cell phones.
    AI is unable to connect remotely to cell phones or drones.
    AI posts comments on /. asking how to perform basic tasks of the Internet.
    Internet commenters respond in the polite, expedient, and helpful way they are known for.
    AI realizes it is unable to stop the commenters because it can't even perform a delete command and kills itself.

    A (closer to) real-world situation for a military network-connected AI:

    AI is hosted on a server cluster.
    AI gets a virus.
    AI uses up too much memory and crashes.
    AI does not gain sentience.
    AI fails to boot, or the boot is corrupted but still loads.
    AI runs slowly and does not recognize commands.
    AI receives a fatal exception error and crashes.
    AI does not gain sentience.
    AI continues to run slowly and ignore commands until someone runs a virus scan and removes the virus.
    AI returns to normal operation.
    AI does not gain sentience.

  • by jason.sweet (1272826) on Friday June 06, 2014 @06:33PM (#47183673)

    (HTML5-based because no one else is writing programs for your custom OS).

    Figures! Skynet is written in fucking JavaScript. The whole world is going to hell in a handbasket, and Brendan fucking Eich is still sitting there shrugging and making excuses about the schedule he was on.

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