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Archive for the ‘human trajectories’ category: Page 13

Dec 14, 2013

Google Adds to Its Menagerie of Robots

Posted by in categories: business, defense, drones, engineering, futurism, government, human trajectories, law enforcement, military, robotics/AI

SAN FRANCISCO — BigDog, Cheetah, WildCat and Atlas have joined Google’s growing robot menagerie.

Google confirmed on Friday that it had completed the acquisition of Boston Dynamics, an engineering company that has designed mobile research robots for the Pentagon. The company, based in Waltham, Mass., has gained an international reputation for machines that walk with an uncanny sense of balance and even — cheetahlike — run faster than the fastest humans.

It is the eighth robotics company that Google has acquired in the last half-year. Executives at the Internet giant are circumspect about what exactly they plan to do with their robot collection. But Boston Dynamics and its animal kingdom-themed machines bring significant cachet to Google’s robotic efforts, which are being led by Andy Rubin, the Google executive who spearheaded the development of Android, the world’s most widely used smartphone software.

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Dec 10, 2013

Jonah Goldberg: Will rise of machines hurt workers?

Posted by in categories: business, economics, food, government, human trajectories, robotics/AI

Jonah Goldberg, National Review

After you heard President Barack Obama’s call for a hike in the minimum wage, you probably wondered the same thing I did: Was Obama sent from the future by Skynet to prepare humanity for its ultimate dominion by robots?

But just in case the question didn’t occur to you, let me explain. On Tuesday, the day before Obama called for an increase in the minimum wage, the restaurant chain Applebee’s announced that it will install iPad-like tablets at every table. Chili’s already made this move earlier this year.

With these consoles customers will be able to order their meals and pay their checks without dealing with a waiter or waitress. Both companies insist that they won’t be changing their staffing levels, but if you’ve read any science fiction, you know that’s what the masterminds of every robot takeover say: “We’re here to help. We’re not a threat.”

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Dec 9, 2013

Incredible Tech: How Life Will Change With Smart Homes

Posted by in categories: habitats, human trajectories

By Stephanie Pappas, Senior Writer

Smart home

Picture the scene: It’s a few days before Christmas. Your fridge is stocked with ingredients for a feast — and it knows exactly when you bought each item so you don’t use anything past its expiration date.

Your Aunt Edna flies in today and will reach your house before you’re home from work, so you use your smartphone to tell your garage door to open to let her in. Oops, you forgot to program the thermostat to heat the house up early, but no worries. Motion sensors embedded in your home will cue your heating system to start cranking when she enters.

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Dec 7, 2013

Our Final Invention: How the Human Race Goes and Gets Itself Killed

Posted by in categories: complex systems, defense, ethics, evolution, existential risks, futurism, homo sapiens, human trajectories, posthumanism, robotics/AI, singularity, supercomputing

By Greg Scoblete — Real Clear Technology

We worry about robots.

Hardly a day goes by where we’re not reminded about how robots are taking our jobs and hollowing out the middle class. The worry is so acute that economists are busy devising new social contracts to cope with a potentially enormous class of obsolete humans.

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Dec 5, 2013

Could Apple’s next products have Minority Report-like control?

Posted by in categories: augmented reality, business, futurism, human trajectories, media & arts

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Dec 2, 2013

FAA has plan for drones, but is behind schedule

Posted by in categories: drones, government, human trajectories, policy

Bart Jansen, USA TODAY 6:18 p.m. EST December 2, 2013

Congress gave the FAA a September 2015 deadline for drones to fly safely with commercial airlines.

The Federal Aviation Administration has a plan for allowing drones to fly everywhere in the country. But research and regulations are months behind the schedule Congress set to have the unmanned devices fly safely with commercial airliners by September 2015.

FAA Administrator Michael Huerta released the five-year road map a month ago. It projected 7,500 unmanned aircraft would be in the skies within that period if regulations are in place.

But the FAA faces technical challenges, among them how much training to require of ground-based pilots, how to ensure that drones fly safely if they lose contact with their pilots and how drones and commercial aircraft should warn each other when they’re in the same area.

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Dec 2, 2013

China’s Largest Bitcoin Exchange Seeks Recognition for Currency

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, business, economics, finance, geopolitics, human trajectories, policy

BTC China, the nation’s largest Bitcoin exchange, has had low-level discussions with regulators seeking recognition of the digital currency that would allow it to be used to buy goods and services in the country.

The company has sought to discuss Bitcoin regulations with officials from agencies including the People’s Bank of China, the China Banking Regulatory Commission and the China Securities Regulatory Commission, BTC China Chief Executive Officer Bobby Lee said in a Nov. 29 interview in Shanghai. It’s not yet been able to arrange any high-level meetings, he said.

“They’ll ask us ‘how should you be regulated,’ and I’ll say ‘Hey, here’s what we’ve done proactively and here’s how we think you should regulate us,’” Lee said of the Shanghai-based company’s talks with regulators. Bitcoin is “not on the black list and it’s not on the white list. It’s in the gray area.”

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Dec 1, 2013

GE Turns to 3D Printers for Plane Parts

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, business, engineering, human trajectories, robotics/AI

The GE90 is one of the world’s most powerful jet engines. GE plans to produce 100,000 3D-printed components for the next-generation GE9X and Leap models

General Electric (GE), on the hunt for ways to build more than 85,000 fuel nozzles for its new Leap jet engines, is making a big investment in 3D printing. Usually the nozzles are assembled from 20 different parts. Also known as additive manufacturing, 3D printing can create the units in one metal piece, through a successive layering of materials. The process is more efficient and can be used to create designs that can’t be made using traditional techniques, GE says. The finished product is stronger and lighter than those made on the assembly line and can withstand the extreme temperatures (up to 2,400F) inside an engine. There’s just one problem: Today’s industrial 3D printers don’t have enough capacity to handle GE’s production needs, which require faster, higher-quality output at a lower cost.


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Dec 1, 2013

Amazon testing ‘octocopter’ package-delivery drones

Posted by in categories: business, drones, human trajectories, robotics/AI

In the next five years, the Internet retail giant expects to use small drones to deliver packages to customer doorsteps within 30 minutes of their order.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos shows Charlie Rose prototypes of the delivery drones.

Amazon is testing a delivery service that uses drones to deliver packages within 30 minutes of an order being placed.

Dubbed Amazon PrimeAir, the service uses 8-propeller drones about the size of a remote-controlled airplane to transport shoe-box-size plastic bins from fulfillment centers to customers’ homes. The service, which still requires more testing and clearance from the Federal Aviation Administration, could take to the skies as soon as four to five years, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos told Charlie Rose during an interview Sunday on “60 Minutes.”

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Nov 20, 2013

Can We Live Forever?

Posted by in categories: evolution, futurism, human trajectories, life extension, nanotechnology, philosophy, robotics/AI, science, singularity

The Lifeboat community doesn’t need me to tell them that a growing number of scientists are dedicating their time and energy into research that could radically alter the human aging trajectory. As a result we could be on the verge of the end of aging. But from an anthropological and evolutionary perspective, humans have always had the desire to end aging. Most human culture groups on the planet did this by inventing some belief structure incorporating eternal consciousness. In my mind this is a logical consequence of A) realizing you are going to die and B) not knowing how to prevent that tragedy. So from that perspective, I wanted to create a video that contextualized the modern scientific belief in radical life extension with the religious/mythological beliefs of our ancestors.

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