Dec 5, 2014

The Transhumanist Scrapbook: Robocop Has Arrived


If you’ve been wondering just when you’d be seeing Robocop patrolling your streets, keeping your neighborhood safe for the power elite, wonder no longer, for Robocop has indeed arrived in Silicon Valley.

5-foot-tall ‘Robocops’ start patrolling Silicon Valley

Now you’ll note that all this is being sold with the usual “keeping you safe” sales pitch:
“Imagine a friend that can see, hear, feel and smell that would tirelessly watch over your corporate campus or neighborhood, keep your loved ones safe and put a smile on everyone passing by,” the company says on its website.
”Imagine if we could utilize technology to make our communities stronger and safer…..together,” the firm added.
“The robots are autonomous and have been developed to function with any interference from the people, and to avoid confrontations.”
Uh huh.
Earlier we’re told about the sophisticated array of “sensors”:
“Autonomous “Robocop”-style robots, equipped with microphones, speakers, cameras, laser scanners and sensors, have started to guard Silicon Valley.
“The security robots, called Knightscope K5 Autonomous Data Machines, were designed by a robotics company, Knightscope, located in Mountain View, California.
“The robots are programmed to notice unusual behavior and alert controllers. It also has odor and heat detectors, and can monitor pollution in carpets as well. Last but not least: with cameras, the Robocops can remember up to 300 number plates a minute, monitoring traffic.”
Well, I certainly feel better (NOT!), don’t you?
But then we get this bit of nonsense that rips the mask off the whole ploy:
“It works like this: someone steps in front of a robot, which stops and moves around the person while sending video to a control center. If a burglar doesn’t leave, then “the robot is looking at the video, listening for glass breakage, any loud sound that breaking in would cause. We’ll get the license plate, picture of the vehicle, geotag location, and time,” says project co-founder Stacy Stephens.”
Now, the nonsense here is that assumption it makes about human ingenuity, and particularly about the human ingenuity of robbers and burglars, who, the last time I checked, usually try to avoid committing crimes in front of police officers. But wait! They’ll certainly wait to do so in front of your local friendly (and expensive) robocop, which is there “just to monitor.”
The next step – and we can all see where this is going – are robocops fitted out with tazers, lasers of a more damaging sort, EMP pulse weapons (to stop vehicles, cause traffic jams, and so on), and even perhaps eventually to serve as surrogate process servers, guards, courtroom bailiffs, and remotely controlled stand-ins for attorneys, witnesses, and so on. Need to control a group, a riot? Send in the pre-pregrammed robots, which are programmed to profile certain types of people. It is, potentially, the ultimate in population culling technology: just add the FBI’s new DNA sequencing-in-90-minutes-technology, and viola! Instant SS, without even the SS’s humanity.
So this isn’t about making you, your family, or neighborhood safe. It’s about controlling you, and making your local power elite safe, and even more remote. And of course, it’s about selling one more technology to local and state governments.

Read this article at -