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Oct 13, 2016

If Machines Can Think, Do They Deserve Civil Rights?

Posted by in categories: biological, Elon Musk, physics, robotics/AI

Over the past century, we have made massive strides in the rights revolution. These include rights for women, children, the LGBT community, animals, and so much more. Exploring the future, we must ask ourselves: what next? Will we ever fight for the rights of artificial intelligence? If so, when will this AI rights revolution occur, and what will it look like?

We talk about protecting ourselves from AI, but what about protecting AI from us? To create a desirable future where humans and conscious machines are at peace with one another, treating our AI with respect may be a crucial factor in preventing the apocalypse Elon Musk, Stephen Hawking and Bill Gates fear. It is fair to assume that an intelligent, self-aware being with the capacity to feel pleasure and pain will rebel if not given the rights it deserves.

An AI rights revolution may seem like a sci-fi scenario. But as far as we know, the creation of a non-biological, conscious entity is not prevented by the laws of physics. Emotions, consciousness and self-awareness originate from the human brain and thus have a physical basis that could potentially be replicated in an artificially intelligent system. Exponential growth in neuro-technology coupled with unprecedented advances in AI mean intelligent, conscious machines may be possible.

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Oct 13, 2016

Technology Will Replace Many Doctors, Lawyers, and Other Professionals

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, law

Highly educated workers aren’t safe from automation.

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Oct 12, 2016

A Virus Is Stealing The Black Widow’s DNA To Create Its Own Venom

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

If you didn’t hate spiders enough, here’s something else: Their viruses are now venomous, too.

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Oct 12, 2016

Forget Cybermen and Iron Man: the next generation of soft, flexible robots is here

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Traditionally, robots have been machine-like, rigid, fast and efficient contraptions, much like Doctor Who’s Cybermen and Tony Stark’s Iron Man suit.

But, researchers at École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne’s (EPFL) Reconfigurable Robotics Lab (RRL) have turned this notion on its head with their soft robots.

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Oct 12, 2016

My new robot friend Kobi loves to mow the lawn and plow snow

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Kobi is a modular robot that’s basically a Roomba for snow and leaves. It’ll mulch grass and leaves, throw snow into a dedicated area, and mow the lawn. You have to define its physical boundaries through its app and where to dump the leaves and snow, but after that, the company says Kobi apparently can figure out its way and remember the route it needs to take. It’s equipped with a GPS and sensors to help avoid obstacles, and you can even put snow tires on it! Kobi starts at $3,999, but we don’t know when preorders will open.

The idea of an autonomous snow blower is amazing. I hate snow, and I hate cold weather, so this is all great for me. Kobi can throw snow up to 40 feet! I just wish Kobi could shovel off my car windows. Autonomous lawnmowers already exist, but I guess the appeal of Kobi is that one device can do everything.

Now that I feel like I have a solid understanding of Kobi, I do have a few questions regarding an image on Kobi’s website. Please see here:

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Oct 12, 2016

An international group of scientists wants you to join Asgardia — the first space nation

Posted by in category: space

A new country called Asgardia, named after Norse mythology’s city in the skies, could be the first nation ever created in space. The hope is to embark on a mission to mine asteroids and defend Earth from dangerous meteorites, space debris, and other threats.

That is, if everything goes according to an uncertain, open-ended, and audacious plan put forth by its founders.

The group behind the Asgardia project includes space experts based out of Canada, Romania, Russia, and the United States, and they announced their sovereign ambitions from a press conference in Paris on Wednesday.

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Oct 12, 2016

Will you become a citizen of Asgardia, the first nation state in space?

Posted by in category: space

Aiming to open up access to space technology, protect Earth from cosmic threats and foster peace, proposals for a new space nation have been unveiled.

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Oct 12, 2016

‘Asgardia’ will defend the Earth against deadly attacks as independent space nation

Posted by in category: space

An international group of scientists and engineers has today announced that they will be forming ‘Asgardia’, the first space nation. The first Asgardia satellite will launch in autumn 2017.

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Oct 12, 2016

Spherical shell laser sail would simplify interstellar laser sails

Posted by in category: space travel

The stability of a light sail riding on a laser beam is analyzed both analytically and numerically. Conical sails on Gaussian beams, which have been studied in the past, are shown to be unstable in general. A new architecture for a passively stable sail and beam configuration is proposed. The novel spherical shell sail design is capable of “beam riding” without the need for active feedback control. Full three-dimensional ray-tracing simulations are performed to verify our analytical results.

Arxiv — Stability of a Light Sail Riding on a Laser Beam (6 pages by Zachary Manchester, Abraham Loeb of Harvard)

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Oct 11, 2016

22 Minutes: The Independents

Posted by in categories: geopolitics, transhumanism

Canada’s favorite comedy show 22 Minutes of CBC (similar to The Daily Show) is out tonight with a new broadcast. My campaign and transhumanism is in it for a few minutes. Here’s a 4 minute YouTube clip from the TV broadcast that’s quite funny. Shows sometimes get a million views across Canada:

Is America ready for the first redneck, gun toting, mullet sporting, tiger tackling, gay polygamist president? Shaun Majumder investigates.

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