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"Next spring, the U.S. military is expecting to deploy Talon robots with machine guns. They can also be equipped with rocket launchers. Really, they're remote-controlled 'bots, not true autonomous 'bots, so you can save the Skynet jokes for, um, some day in the not-to-distant future. This is just the first, or maybe second step. As for me, I just want to see arena matches between gangs of these suckers. Robot wars indeed!"
Source: Slashdot

If these were to be used in conflicts/wars, is it really ethical to desensitize humans even further from the act of killing one another?
 

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yeah, but what's gonna happen, when all those bot will destry eachother, and conflict will be still there? :evil:
 

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Well then it changes back to normal war... except besides body parts there would be screws and cords around the battle field...

Besides, I really don't think it matters HOW you kill each other, it's still killing as long as you make the decisions...
 

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I still think Guns should be outlawed and all wars should be fought with swords. This would make war more.... 'personal', and might in fact help reduce it as you are no longer bombing blobs, but destroying faces in front of your eyes, but I digress.
 

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Wired Magazine has an article on this subject too .

Well, I do think that it's cool. The more robots take our jobs, the merrier (and I mean it). We should get away from stupid jobs, like flipping burgers, driving cabs or being cashiers. Robots should be doing it for us, while we reap the rewards of their efforts.

I do think there's a strong possibility of this happening. Just read Marvin Minsky's thought-provoking article Will Robots Inherit the Earth?
 

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Boltzmann said:
Well, I do think that it's cool. The more robots take our jobs, the merrier (and I mean it). We should get away from stupid jobs, like flipping burgers, driving cabs or being cashiers. Robots should be doing it for us, while we reap the rewards of their efforts.
I think not, the low class whose aspirations and ambitions are not as high as yours or mine (be it because they are not smart of for any other reason) will lose their "stupid" jobs at the hands of a big piece of junk-I mean, lifeless steel. We won't harvest any rewards for their efforts (they aren't making any on the first place, they are just carrying on a task which was programmed into them... your video system doesn't perform any effort when you program it to record a tape), more likely we will have to deal with several social issues due to the above mentioned point (increase on unemployment (sp?)).
 

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Kaiser Sigma said:
I think not, the low class whose aspirations and ambitions are not as high as yours or mine (be it because they are not smart of for any other reason) will lose their "stupid" jobs at the hands of a big piece of junk-I mean, lifeless steel. We won't harvest any rewards for their efforts (they aren't making any on the first place, they are just carrying on a task which was programmed into them... your video system doesn't perform any effort when you program it to record a tape), more likely we will have to deal with several social issues due to the above mentioned point (increase on unemployment (sp?)).
When I talked about "their efforts" it was only a metaphor.
Only a true AI can really make an effort to anything. Dumb robots (like the ones I was describing) cannot.

Anyway, I do think that social problems will arise, but can can reap the rewards if we think about a fair society. That's why I support initiatives like the Basic Income Guarantee .
If we could just redistribute the wealth generated by these robots, people will have money and they'll not have to work on such menial jobs to get it.
 

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Pray tell what made you come to the conclussion that they don't want to work on such "menial" jobs... you may find it surprising but some people would rather work for their money than have it coming from initiatives like BIG. I don't think that all people will want to spend their lives without being useful, feeling that often comes from a job.

Moreover, your despective way of referring to those who work on not scientifical jobs is apalling... not everyone has your aspirations, but more important they don't need to. Who are you to judge their jobs?
 

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Kaiser Sigma said:
Pray tell what made you come to the conclussion that they don't want to work on such "menial" jobs... you may find it surprising but some people would rather work for their money than have it coming from initiatives like BIG. I don't think that all people will want to spend their lives without being useful, feeling that often comes from a job.

Moreover, your despective way of referring to those who work on not scientifical jobs is apalling... not everyone has your aspirations, but more important they don't need to. Who are you to judge their jobs?
Most burger-flipping people are not happy with their jobs. I'm not judging their jobs, they are doing it themselves. (Workers for McDonald's here in Brazil call themselves "MacSlaves", for instance). It's not like they're proud of their jobs or anything, 99% of them have those jobs beucase they can't get anything better.

Anyway, think of this robotics development as inevitable. The cost of robots is getting lower every year. As soon as buying (and maintaining) a robot gets cheaper than having a human employee, the always-greedy corporations will do the switch.
Look at what happened with automated factories (specially in the automobile industry). This is bonna-fide historical evidence of what I'm talking about here. And we can expect ever-cheaper robots doing increasingly more complex work.
The only way out of this scenario is if the technology is impossible to achieve. As long as it's possible there'll be companies interested in it. And as soon as the cost/benefit analysis show an opportunity to increase profits, lay-offs will happen. And keep in mind that no new jobs positions will be available, since robots will be doing the job (this is what happened in those auto factories I mentioned).

This is what economists call structural unemployment .
 

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Boltzmann said:
Most burger-flipping people are not happy with their jobs.
You are being specifical, I'm more like generalizing. I'm not limitating my argument to burger-flipping alone. Think of all the "menial" and / or "stupid" jobs.

Boltzmann said:
Anyway, think of this robotics development as inevitable.
Of course I do... at the same time I think of social anger and chaos against unemployment as inevitable as well.
 

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Kaiser Sigma said:
You are being specifical, I'm more like generalizing. I'm not limitating my argument to burger-flipping alone. Think of all the "menial" and / or "stupid" jobs.
Well, if you can you really say that people like the extremely underpaid bus drivers, maids, cleaners etc, are proud of their jobs and choose it because they really like doing what they do? If 1% of them fits this description I would be amazed.
Most people holding menial jobs have them only because they couldn't find anything else. BTW, the boston globe recently featured a short article called The Future of Menial Jobs .


Kaiser Sigma said:
Of course I do... at the same time I think of social anger and chaos against unemployment as inevitable as well.
And what can we do to alleviate the problems generated by such unemployment? A Basic Income Guarantee is one of the things that we can do.

The american sociologist James Hughes discuss these topics in two columns, called Embrace the End of Work and Getting Paid in Our Jobless Future .
 

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Boltzmann said:
Well, if you can you really say that people like the extremely underpaid bus drivers, maids, cleaners etc, are proud of their jobs and choose it because they really like doing what they do? If 1% of them fits this description I would be amazed.
Bus drivers earn a lot of money actually (at least in my country). Maids and cleaners are underpaid but they do their work nevertheless and most are proud of them. It's an honest way of living, as I've said not everyone has yours or mine aspirationsm, for them to be able to earn money for their family is more than enough.

More than 1% fits this description, so go and amaze yourself, in the name of progress you are being oblivious to the pleasures of those with low level of education and less expectations for their life.

A jobless future, I don't give it more than a decade before people realize what a boring way of living such thing truly is.
 

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Postmen. I work as a postie. I'm not particularly fond of the job, and wouldn't mind if it were taken from me and I were replaced with a machine (for a wage of course), but a good deal of hte guys there like thier job. They get paid well for a menial task.
 

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Kaiser Sigma said:
Bus drivers earn a lot of money actually (at least in my country). Maids and cleaners are underpaid but they do their work nevertheless and most are proud of them. It's an honest way of living, as I've said not everyone has yours or mine aspirationsm, for them to be able to earn money for their family is more than enough.

More than 1% fits this description, so go and amaze yourself, in the name of progress you are being oblivious to the pleasures of those with low level of education and less expectations for their life.

A jobless future, I don't give it more than a decade before people realize what a boring way of living such thing truly is.
Well, in my country bus drivers work too much and earn too little (like almost everyone else).

Now tell me that if those maids and cleaners could get a better job (not only quantitavely, but qualitatively) they would pass the opportunity for love of their current jobs... ("oh no, I really like being a cleaner, working a lot and earning little - I don't want your office position")

And what about the people selling stuff (like cookies or soft drinks) in the streets and traffic lights? Are they proud of their jobs too ("I'm an independent worker, sir, and I'm proud of it").
 

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Boltzmann said:
Now tell me that if those maids and cleaners could get a better job (not only quantitavely, but qualitatively) they would pass the opportunity for love of their current jobs... ("oh no, I really like being a cleaner, working a lot and earning little - I don't want your office position")

And what about the people selling stuff (like cookies or soft drinks) in the streets and traffic lights? Are they proud of their jobs too ("I'm an independent worker, sir, and I'm proud of it").
Those are people who haven't even finished their elementary studies... and you claim they can get a better job? Doing what: changing the oil of the bots who are now performing their tasks?

A street seller can qualify for more? Like what?

They have the jobs fitted for their condition... they are person without knowledge and without the interest to pursue it. Tell me about your utopia, what is this better job they can get all about?
 

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Kaiser Sigma said:
Those are people who haven't even finished their elementary studies... and you claim they can get a better job? Doing what: changing the oil of the bots who are now performing their tasks?

A street seller can qualify for more? Like what?

They have the jobs fitted for their condition... they are person without knowledge and without the interest to pursue it. Tell me about your utopia, what is this better job they can get all about?
I'm not saying that they can get a better job. I'm sure that most of them cannot. I'm just saying that if they had the opportunity to get a a better job, they would take it nonetheless. It's not like it was their childhood dream to be cleaners, maids or street sellers.

It's different for other jobs. Pilots, for instance. Most pilots, even if they had the chance to get a higher-paying job wouldn't take it, because they love what they do (and are proud of it).

I know that I wouldn't take certain high-paying jobs, because they wouldn't be gratifying to. Satisfaction (with yourself and with your job) is better than money, IMO.

My "utopia" is not about those people getting better jobs. They cannot (well, most of them cannot). It's about people getting paid regardless of their emplyoment status (the robots will be doing the work).
 

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Which takes us back to the first point... as lowly as their job seems to you some of them take pride in performing them rather than idling and getting paid (Not all, but a lot of them do... which makes me think that this will encourage a lazy society having an adverse effect rather than beneficial). They can't get a better job so what is left for them to do? Nothing...
 

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Well, at least they will do nothing and get paid for it if a solution like BIG is implemented. If no solution at all is implemented they will do nothing, don't get any money and starve because of the increased automation.

Structural unemployment is on the rise. Evidences of a robotic nation keep coming. We can either do nothing about it and just complain or we can be pro-active and plan ahead (that's why initiatives like BIG are important).

The only solution to this problem would be communism. A totalitarian government takes control of all the big corporations, forbids the use of robots and uses cheap human labor (because in communism, human labor is always cheap). This is not a desirable solution, to anyone (except rabid communists, that is).
 

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Boltzmann said:
Well, at least they will do nothing and get paid for it if a solution like BIG is implemented.
And this is your idea of a better society? Where people don't have to work to earn money? I'm afraid that our concepts are way more different than I've ever thought.

Boltzmann said:
We can either do nothing about it and just complain or we can be pro-active and plan ahead (that's why initiatives like BIG are important).
Again, initiatives like BIG encourage a lame excuse for society... it's not much better than the "rabid" communism... perhaps we can focus terrorism against this "nation"... that'd be a good sport. :lol:
 
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