Edit: and don't get me started on the "cruise missiles". 1000 km range and they hit within five meters, and with unit cost less than training for a single infantryman? Total bullshit, I can't believe anyone buys it.
* Ten years ago, when we started arming drone aircraft with anti-tank missiles
* TWenty years ago, when cruise missiles gained active guidance
* Thirty years ago, when we got laser-guided bomb technology working
* Eighty years ago, when radio let commanders give orders to subordinates without seeing their suffering
* A hundred years ago, when artillery gave us the ability to kill tens of thousands of people without them ever leaving their trenches
* Three hundred years ago, when firearms became truly viable and infantrymen could kill their opponent from far enough away that they didn't get blood on them
Don't let the human shape make you afraid. The Terminators had human faces because that made them scary, not because it was effective. People are afraid of these robots because they have two arms and two legs, not because of what they can do, and these fears about "spinning in circles shooting machine guns" are pathetic rationalizations of their loss of reason in the face of emotion.
Someone also has to have acquired enough military expertise to command these units effectively, something "a certain technical elite" feels is beneath them.
A very common sentiment. However, please remember that the skills to get in at the bottom of each field are radically different and don't let that colour your perception of the top of each field.
This is a prime example of the disdain for the military I was talking about. Actual warfighting is far more complex than noob tubing and zerg rushes, I assure you.
Switzerland is the only country that gets close to a democracy - they let their citizens vote on many issues.
Finding a representative that you agree with on most (let alone all) issues is pretty much impossible.
Is that us the US by any chance? Because if these things ever become war machines I doubt the US will be second to anybody in using them.
I can think of a few jobs currently handled by humans in the FCs where this robot in particular could do the entire job. Lots of kinks to work out I'm sure but that's what the software team is there for.
Google would probably never sell to their biggest competitor at a reasonable price though. Plus, Amazon already has a robotics company in Boston (Kiva).
In the end though they're still building prototypes as R&D to try and find something that can be polished into a product.
here's a video with commentary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=giS41utjlbU
ETA: I guess that's skin in the game. They probably have an agreement that everyone involved with the project parks their car in the parking lot for the first parking lot run.
Should be a requirement in most engineering/maintenance fields IMO. When I used to be a pilot, the engineer who signed off on the maintenance manifest after a major aircraft service was always required to go up on the check flight with the flight crew.
I want to see them take this to a skate park
Next up: Tony Hawks Pro Skater Robot edition
It certainly solves most of stability problems for a typical inverted pendulum configurations (cornering, obstacles of different height, lowering weight for more speed, raising it for more reach).
Man in a wheelchair beats everyone in a street fight.
The same way right now we're stuck between biology and political correctness when talking about ex-male MMA or wrestling competitors dominating in the women's side of the sport when most of their physical development happened before hormone therapy and they end up with a distinctly more powerful physique.
Separate bathrooms for cyborgs who maybe will be reviled and feared when they do become a very small minority?
I don't think we are past the threshold though. People, including coaches of able-bodied athletes are still viewing prosthetics as balancing the odds.
To me the real threshold will be when a double-amputee will break the 200m or 400m World record. I thought it would happen last year but I guess a few more years will be needed. It will happen.
I happen to be friends with a woman who is in an adult roller derby league. There is a transgender woman (previously a man) who pretty much dominates the league, and is clearly a faster skater than the other women. I'm always wondering how the other women feel about that, because as you say, there is the force of political correctness that stops anyone from outright saying anything about it. But it's clearly an unfair advantage for the transgendered person.
I wonder: if a country can deploy an army of robots to achieve its military ends, how does that play out in the long run? Does this mean future wars will just be "our" droids versus "theirs"? Does this "solve" terrorism in the long run, or make it much worse. Also, seeing aggressive robots feels scary.
The domestic propaganda goes down much smoother at this point. After all, who wants peace when we can win?
I bet the lag would be terrible.
Remember Grace Hopper.
If they could route the link through a constellation of LEO satellites, then the lag would probably be comparable to what you get in a typical multiplayer FPS. Ground to LEO and back is 1ms to 14ms, depending on how high in LEO the satellite is (assuming satellite directly above your head). Space is pretty close to us.
As for how to get that constellation up, well, SpaceX is working on making that pretty cheap.
I'm guessing they could (would?) go most of the way via undersea cable (just as normal folks do), pop out somewhere close and then beam up to some satellite. I'm in Australia, and (I think) Puerto Rico is roughly on the other side of the word (although I did get a D in high school geography, so there's a good chance I'm wrong here). My round-trip ping time averages ~320ms to some random PR ISP (22.214.171.124). I have no idea how much extra latency a last-stage satellite hop would add in, but let's say it triples the latency.
Almost a second in lag. So pretty terrible. I guess they'd need to use characters, er drones, with good AoE attacks...
I'd guess there's no anti-aimbot code, though.
This particular robot doesn't strike me as especially military, though yeah, it's kind of scary-moving.
You get a winer and a loser, it does not take years and costs a fortune and you avoid all the unnecessary loss of life and the damage you have to fix after the war. That seems like a win for everyone involved. Well, that could actually also work right now, no need to wait for robot armies.
In this episode, the crew of the USS Enterprise visits a planet whose people
fight a computer-simulated war against a neighboring planet. Although the
war is fought via computer simulation, the citizens of each planet have to
submit to real executions inside "disintegration booths" to meet the casualty
counts of the simulated attacks.
Otherwise, no matter if you believe if you have got a 50% or 10% chance of victory (or even no chance, but a certainty of painful losses for the opponent) then it makes all kinds of practical sense for the loser to say "screw the coin/game" and simply ignore the result and escalate it further.
If a reasonable settlement acceptable to both sides can be negotiated, then it doesn't need the coin or game in the first place; and if someone can enforce the conditions on the loser without a horrible cost, then there's no need for a game or a war since it can be done as a simple ultimatum.
After one robot army has defeated the other one it has to go after human soldiers, assets or even civilians to achieve a victory or must at least be willing to do so unless the opposing country surrendes at this prospect. Just defeating the robot army and then doing nothing will not be effective beyond the inflicted loss of resources.
This is what democracy is, a coarse estimate of who has the most soldiers. A 90% majority can do what they want, a 51% majority needs to compromise a little.
However, in an actual war many things matter more than the numbers or fighting power. For example, it is clear that ISIS is much weaker than the full USA military, however, because defeating ISIS in an actual land war would cause significant casualties to USA, they can go on - a clear simulation result showing that they would lose won't ever be enough for them to concede defeat since they can (and will) simply call it as a bluff and claim that USA is not willing to pay the blood price. So you can't settle a conflict like this with a simulation; the loser always has the backup plan of telling "make me, if you dare" instead of accepting the loss.
Agreeing to a result of simulations that both sides believe isn't settling undecided disputes nonviolently, it's just old fashioned diplomacy or ultimatum/surrender.
Nations are never going to rid themselves of the desire for war, or the need for war to involve bloodshed, because we're just another species of simian bludgeoning the out-group to death with extremely abstract and over-engineered rocks. We already have non-violent ways to resolve conflicts between nations, we fight wars explicitly to kill people.
Which would be a first class war crime.
Nations are never going to rid themselves of the desire for war, or the need for war to involve bloodshed, because we're just another species of simian bludgeoning the out-group to death with extremely abstract and over-engineered rocks.
While that is not an uncommon point of view empirical evidence suggests otherwise, war seems to be in decline and seems to have shifted from wars between nations to civil wars and asymmetric wars.
Some argue that advances in human behavior heavily lag behind technological advances and I tend to agree at least somewhat, but concluding that we will never manage to overcome this stupidity seems not really obvious to me. And I certainly hope that it is not true.
We already have non-violent ways to resolve conflicts between nations, we fight wars explicitly to kill people.
Force is the ultimate and only way to »resolve« conflicts if all other means fail. But I do not think we are killing people for the sake of it in wars, it is just a means to an end.
War crime convictions are for the losing side.
Does any one know if they are planning to make a low power and light exoskeleton kind of mutation to this tech? This could be revolutionary for people with disabilities.
or as a mode of personal transport in difficult terrain?
I also wouldn't bet on the run time being real long.
The iBot was a practical realization of a stabilized, powered chair (same tech as Segway):
I guess it isn't manufactured anymore.
More seriously, this is a very agile robot I am very sure I would never want to be in the same room with it when it was being tested. That said, the 100 lb basket it a bit disappointing. I was thinking "Ok this could be an offload/onload robot for freight" but maybe not. It is remarkably quiet which is something the original Bigdog discovered really put the damper on its threat ability.
But if Amazon used it in warehouses? Probably more than they need for that activity.
Add a quadricopter on the head and you'll have a crazy kung fu master...
Freaking cool :-)
How about single -seat self driving mobility device https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rukmDZc3EiA
Of course it's more complicated than that because it looks as though the centre of mass can move and the legs can bend and are not rigid, but it would make more sense approaching this from a kinematics perspective rather than a ML one.