Sure, fears of human-zapping robots might be a “flakey concern,” but that doesn’t mean technology is short on existential risks. The University of Cambridge is out to find the truth.
Comparisons of downloadable books and music to their ancient, tangible predecessors are an old, old meme, but sometimes the comparison applies.
The pirated version (and there is ALWAYS a pirated version) already has *FREE!* going for it. Do you really want to add “Less of a hassle to obtain, easier to use, and safer/less spyware” too?
The world is using up its natural resources at an alarming rate, and this has caused a permanent shift in their value. We all need to adjust our behavior to this new environment. It would help if we did it quickly.
Source: Time to Wake Up: Days of Abundant Resources and Falling Prices Are Over Forever by Jeremy Grantham, published 2011/04/25
Alternate PDF: http://www.theravinaproject.org/JGLetterALL_1Q11.pdf
Alternate web: http://www.theoildrum.com/node/7853
Commented alternate: We’re Headed For A Disaster Of Biblical Proportions – Business Insider
Commented alternate: Jeremy Grantham must-read, “Time to Wake Up: Days of Abundant Resources and Falling Prices Are Over Forever” | ThinkProgress
Onity, whose keycard locks can be found on at least four million rooms around the world, has a plan to fix a security flaw … the fix requires hardware changes to every affected lock.
Onity wants the hotels who already bought the company’s insecure product to pay for the fix
To what extent are companies obliged to patch the security of their products, and at what point are they morally permitted to charge for further maintenance/modification?
Within two or three decades the difference between automated driving and human driving will be so great you may not be legally allowed to drive your own …
Source: Moral Machines – The New Yorker
Proposed law scheduled for a vote next week originally increased Americans’ e-mail privacy. Then law enforcement complained. Now it increases government access to e-mail and other digital files.
You believe in monsters, whether you know it or not. They are an important part of who we are — so let’s understand this obsession.
On a visit to Standard Motor Products’ fuel-injector assembly line in South Carolina, Atlantic writer Adam Davidson asked why a worker there, Maddie, was welding caps onto the injectors herself. Why not use a machine? That’s how a lot of the factory’s other tasks were performed. Maddie’s supervisor, Tony, had a bracing, direct answer: “Maddie is cheaper than a machine.”
It was just this week that Foxconn, the Chinese company that manufactures so many of America’s favorite gadgets, initiated a plan to buy 1 million robots to replace human workers. When that day comes, thousands of men and women working at Apple’s Chinese manufacturing plants will be unemployed. You’ll have to wonder—in spite of notorious labor abuses at Foxconn—were those jobs better than none?
Source: How a Robot Will Steal Your Job
Source: Commuting in the United States: 2009 (PDF)