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Hawking, Musk, Woz: We Must Ban the 'Kalashnikovs of Tomorrow'


Hawking, Musk, Woz: We Must Ban the 'Kalashnikovs of Tomorrow'

Nadia Prupis, staff writer

More than 1,000 science and technology experts on Monday published an open letter calling for a ban on autonomous weapons—machines capable of killing without human operators—to prevent a "virtually inevitable" high-stakes global arms race.

Among the signatories are physicist and professor Stephen Hawking, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, among many others. The letter was presented at the International Joint Conferences on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI) in Buenos Aires, Argentina.


The “HK’s” “hunter killer” drones of the “Terminator” film series are not far off. Life is imitating art at a faster and faster pace. With more and more surveillance cameras on highways, streets, banks, stores, shopping malls, government buildings and drones to stay airborne for 24 hours, mass surveillance by armed drones or links to police and armed military “SWAT” teams for any citizen or group of citizens trying to organize and exercise their First Amendment Rights " to petition the government for redress of grievances" resulting in an attack because of a “perceived threat” by video or “infer red” sensor body heat, even if it is just a social engagement or party is truly frightening. The “brave new world” of “1984” is tame compared to the world coming about that looks more and more like the dystopian “Terminator” view being warned about by this letter signed by Wozniak, Hawking and Musk. Thanks to them and all who signed the letter. I hope it is headed and that it is not too late to stop this decent into madness.


AS overwhelming as it seems, the simple truth is that profit will need to be taken out of the weapons and munitions marketplace. Scientists are a good start, next up, every preacher from every pulpit of every peace seeking church needs to pressure congress as well as get their congregations to divest their portfolios of any and all defense contractors, weapon makers, and purveyors of death.


Your request for the Reverends to step forward launched a visual for me.

When we moved out to our units, there were plenty of priests praying over us and giving us each bibles.The Salvation Army however, gave us sewing kits, infinitely more practical and far less hypocritical.

The sooner we realize that these developments of technology are created by the evolution of the scientific method, the better we will be able to respond.
The method itself gives rise to what ever “next generation” device that is an improvement over the current prototype.

We gave over circuit design to the computers in the early nineties. We didn’t need that room full of engineers to design, and in the process, maybe have a virtuous insight…gee maybe we shouldn’t do this.

Instead you can have a single Cheney submitting job requests to a design mechanism that builds through correlational analysis. These existing subsets can be assembled this new way…

The solution starts with…These Things I will No Longer Do…


I will argue that the United States did not invent military commercialism, the Navy of the British Empire being but one example, but they sure as hell have perfected it to a finely tuned art form. With military spending comprising 54% of our budget it is a wonder we even have a functional society. That is if one can consider this society functional.


I’m with you on this. I just got a new notebook and Windows Eight is all about the net. I thought Windows Seven was a bit over the top but I don’t even want to consider Ten. I may move to Apple.


That won’t help. Apple is all about the net, with Apple in control. iTunes was one of the first assaults out of the box making us pay rent for our lives and lifestyles, instead of owning. They led the pack. Almost everything else going on today is making us tenant farmers in our own lives as the company stores own what used to be ours, even our own notes and diaries and more. We and our devices are just dumb terminals on their mainframe - from their perspective.


The best way to lower casualties is to just not start wars. Not really so hard. After all who is really at odds with each other? Those of us in the lower classes who don’t know anyone in that other country that we have such a grudge against? Can’t be us. But the ruling classes have a spat and we peasants are sent out to kill each other. Remember who cuts the orders. If they are so darn determined to have a spat with each other, to feel offended, etcetera, let the ruling classes go fight.


1st thing that came to mind reading this…SkyNet is coming!


A percentage of our population has not shed their dumb troglodyte, fear driven, reactionary, authoritarian roots yet. The ones who act like animals whom we call “conservatives” and their neoliberal kin.

Cons don’t realize that through science and appropriate technology humans can transcend their bestial origins and can share the basics without having to resort to violence and cruelty. That competition in sports is healthy and in other ventures cooperation works best.

The Kalashnikovs of Tomorrow may end when conservatives become their victims, praying to their sky god to save them from a fate of their own making.


At some point during the evolution of beings, they stop turning every new technology into a weapon. Are we finally there? Such a concept is blasphemy to our current military.


I fully agree that such autonomous killing-machines absolutely must be banned. But not at all for the reasons that they give - that they will fall into the so-called “wrong hands”, likening them to a Kalishnikov (AK-47) - a Freudian slip that belies the the class interests of the wealthy people who wrote this letter - nothing scares a rich person more than a guy in green fatigues, red-starred beret and a Kalashnikov.

The far more scary aspect of these weapons is that they will be in the hands of the USA and Israel and a few other chosen “allies”.


Perhaps not “a guy in green fatigues” but little green guys. Look at the first syllables of the names given here - Hawk, Musk, and Woz - all suggesting that they’re not humans but aliens out to deprive us of our right to improve our defenses against their scientifically advanced civilization. That’s why Americans must form a new kind of NRA - National Robot Association - in order to popularize lethal robots to protect ourselves against those bad creatures.


Routing, yes, but actual design?? Do you have a cite?


Sorry, I don’t get your humor.


War for profit stated when the first millipede bit the other one for invading its “territory” and stealing its female.


Killer robots could not exist without idiot scientists devising the technology. It is time the scientific community as a whole looked seriously at its ethics.


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notheonly1 -
Best to run away and pretend you don’t know and leave all the people who are trying to change things to do it without your help? To leave the poor and suffering who maybe never had the educational background that you have and technology like what you are using right now to just suffer and die and all the rest.

Disappear into Nature… is a selfish hedonistic act since Nature is fast disappearing and needs everyone’s help if we are to not lose the little that may be saved.

What difference would there be between a rich man building a get away from it all vacation home inside a patch of previously untouched Nature (because he can) and a man building a small shack in a piece of nature (because he can) and both men remaining aloof from the plight of the world that they ignore and have left behind them. Aside from shopping and such since living off the land is virtually impossible and … and medical expenses because…

What disappear into Nature would that be? The hedonistic greed or the hedonistic self indulgence?


Where do you think you are commenting BTW? You are preaching what to people in CD? To give up on everything and everybody? Okay go ahead but spare us your defeatism and excuses and just go okay? Stop posting as if you care and go join a community of people who don’t care for anything except themselves and want to share with other people who don’t care. Join some forum where people indulge about how they are tired and don’t care because they wanted some dramatic emotional ending and feel like they didn’t get it after 30 years.

You have the right to just disappear but don’t share that crap like it was special okay? We all fight the good fight, win or lose because… it needs to be fought. People care about nature and other people. That’s all. It isn’t about anything else.

Maybe some youngster out there might learn something different from a rightwindnut climate denier and you could show that kid what is real but oh…right …your elephantness is tired so fuck that kid because you won’t bother teaching him the truth …and why not? Oh right…you just don’t wanna no more. You need to share that with progressive people who care about the world? Why? Oh right, you were llied were lied to about what? And poor Ms. Bland lost her life for pulling over to let the cop pass. And up north the Inuit are having trouble hunting seals as the ice thins too much too fast. And all the rest that is wrong with the world… some folks just like being on the side that wants to better the world!

… and some folks don’t but then there are some folks who know better but just don’t want to bother helping no more. Okay but then why share that with people who do care? That is self indulgence. I am older than you and trust me shit happens and CD and other progressive forums are for those who want to make less shit happen…

Fair enough but then you won’t be still talking in CD anymore right? You’ll be disappearing right?

Well bye then. On your sailboat.