[SATLUG] 1984, Robots, the Military and Technology

ed horned0wl93 at gmail.com
Fri Mar 21 03:21:03 CDT 2008


pixelnate wrote:
> On Thu, 2008-03-20 at 23:26 -0500, Will Southworth wrote:
>
>   
>> 1984 was written by George Orwell. Ray Bradbury wrote Fahrenheit 451.
>>     
>
> I stand corrected for the second time, thank you. If that is the only criticism I receive tonight then I consider myself a fortunate man.
>
>   
>> This has very little to do with linux or satlug. Let's get back on track and take this flame bait private.
>>     
>
> Actually, the point hidden in all this is very relevant to the list. There are some very intelligent and learned people on this list. This is a city with a long military history and many people on this list are serving in the military, have served in the military or are working for the government in some capacity.
>
> I would caution everyone that we must be wary of blind technolust without some sense of the intended use of a technology. The BigDog project does represent an amazing technical achievement by man to able to make such a robot. But I believe the geeks/nerds (I use the terms lovingly) that were tasked to build such a beast have been seduced into doing it for the wrong reasons. Any project funded by DARPA will surely be intended for military use, and as is the case in these times, will most likely trickle down into local law enforcement. Which is to say that it will ultimately be pointed at the rest of us. We should be mindful of this as we watch the films of its amazing movements.
>   
See again, BigDog, and compare to the robotics in the original movie,
"Terminator," as well as the Imperial Walkers in "Star Wars."  This
breakthrough definitely paves the way for both.  Add cloning...
> As geeks we love to tinker (see the Puppy Linux thread) and we love to make the automatons dance with our computer magic, but we must be mindful of the purpose for which some things are built. In every robot story I know from science fiction, there is always a mention of the previous generation of robots that did much damage before people managed to get things back under control. As a freedom loving human being I would prefer not to be faced with a future where robots were out to harm me. Watching the BigDog movies, I get a sense that we are in for rough times ahead.
>   
In the movie, "Star Trek VI, The Undiscovered Country," and later
mimicked  by Captain  Picard in ST: TNG, was an intriguing suggestion
(paraphrased...):  "Advancements in technology and their uses weigh
heavily upon us of late.  Perhaps its pursuit should be revised to
consider the premise that, just because we /can/ do a thing need not
mean that we necessarily /must/ do that thing..."  or words very like
these...  Wise thoughts from a more recent philosopher...

Cheers;

Ed



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