February 03, 2005
Make Robot Love Not Robot War
Another diptych, originally in the Herald.
South Korean Scientist Developing Artificial Desire
Kim Jong-Hwan, the director of the ITRC-Intelligent Robot Research Centre, has developed a series of artificial chromosomes that, he says, will allow robots to feel lusty, and could eventually lead to them reproducing.U.S. Army Developing Robot Soldiers
Late last week, in a parking lot in New Jersey, the U.S. Army unveiled what may be the future of war: 3-foot-tall robotic "soldiers," outfitted with tank tracks, night vision and mounted automatic weapons capable of firing more than 300 rounds at a burst. Known as SWORDS (Special Weapons Observation Reconnaissance Detection Systems), these battle bots are on the leading edge of a new kind of warfare, in which — or so the argument goes — our troops will one day remain hidden (and, presumably, protected) while engaging the enemy by remote control. The Army intends to deploy 18 SWORDS units to Iraq in the spring, marking the first time robots have been used to fight and kill human beings one on one.Sorry for the linkiness. I was toying with the idea of composing a post on the theme "Yay democracy! Boo point-scoring war-mongering right-wing f*cktards!" but I'm not sure I can be bothered.