Dear Noble Robo-Witness,
Remember the Star Wars movies, featuring the helpful robot, R2-D2? Well, there is now in use a 31/2-foot-tall type of “germ-zapping” robot that closely resembles the squat, trashcan-like shape of R2-D2. It was described in a recent article by Robert Channick, Waukegan factory churns out germ-zapping robots for COVID-19, which appeared within the November 29, 2020, edition of THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE.
In the current fight against the seemingly unstoppable, ever-farther spread of COVID-19 infections into nearly ALL areas of the World, hospital rooms, of course, are one of the truly vital places to keep disinfected! At Northwest Community Hospital in Arlington Heights, Illinois, for example, every COVID room gets disinfected by these “germ-zapping” robots, whenever an infected patient gets discharged. These are called LightStrike robots, because they fire a stream of high-intensity photon particles, contained within a light beam, that strike virus-infected surfaces. According to the article, the robot is rolled into position, plugged into a wall socket, and then is remotely activated by a human handler, usually a member of the housekeeping staff. The robot operates within a closed room, so that the handler isn’t blinded by its intense beam of photon light. “Its head rises another 2 feet and a super bright xenon bulb lights up,” Channick explains.
Morris Miller, CEO of Xenox, reveals what happens when the beam strikes a virus or some other invading pathogen (“disease-causer”): “‘When you hit a pathogen with a high-intensity photon, it literally blows apart the cellular wall, basically deactivating it so that nobody else gets infected.'” An August study published by the Texas Biomedical Research Institute, “found the robot destroyed nearly 100% of the virus on surfaces[,] in two minutes.”
THE NEAR FUTURE: ROBOTS DISINFECTING HOTELS, AS WELL AS HOSPITALS
Miller (the CEO of Xenox – – the Texas-based company selling the Lightstrike robots) has predicted a broad expansion in the future use of his robots for disinfection in several different types of institutions: “The COVID-19 pandemic, which has infected more than 12 million people and killed more than 257,000 in the U.S. alone . . . has increased the need at hospitals, and broadened the potential applications for the robot.” His prediction includes use in hotels, claiming that, “‘In three years from now, you’re not going to stay in a hotel that hasn’t been disinfected with UV light.'”
In response, I must ask, “So, what about the continuing future employment of human employees in the housekeeping staff? Will the robots start taking over other once-human labor, in hospitals and hotels, as well?” After all, we know that Moore’s Law, which predicts AI and robots will keep doubling their capacity, about every 3 years, is still in effect!
Of most concern, is that Xenex has given these robots actual human names, such as Mark, Rowan, Dorian, and Jabba. In fact, a company called Astronics, has been chosen “to build several hundred robots in Waukegan [Illinois,] through spring 2021.” According to the article author, “Astronics delivered its first batch of Illinois-made robots late last month. Each will be named by its new owner, with an engraved nameplate attached to the robot.” In conclusion, I really have to ask this very troubling question: “Isn’t this personal naming of each Lightstrike robot, by each of its new owners, going to psychologically influence each new owner to think that these non-living machines are actually equal to us, as human beings? What insidious dangers to the long-term future of Humanity, will this abnormal psychology likely produce?”
Dear Noble Robo-Witness,
VantagePoint (https://vantagepoint.clickfunnels.com/rfltraining) has recently announced that it is giving “FREE LIVE TRAINING” for active stock traders. This company is describing this training as learning how to use “an advanced suite of indicators” that stock traders “of ANY experience level can use to predict market moves across ALL markets,” including “stocks, options, futures, commodities, and Forex.”
VantagePoint claims that it is using an “advanced A.I.[Artificially Intelligent] ‘brain'” – – one that gives human stock traders market predictions “with up to 87.4% accuracy . . . 3 days before they happen.” In general, they are claiming that, “VantagePoint predicts major reversals IN ADVANCE with A.I.”
In conclusion, it certainly appears that this company is using an “advanced A.I. brain” that aims to “educate” the N.I. (Natural Intelligence) of participating human stock traders. It claims to educate the traders in a way that allows them to predict major downturns of stocks and other markets 3 days in advance, before their prices actually decline. If accurate, then, traders who use this “advanced suite of indicators” will be able to “significantly improve” their “trading results.” In effect, then, such an “advanced AI brain” is supposed to help human stock traders predict downturns in the market three days before they occur, such that they know when it is appropriate to sell stocks, before they suffer losses.
At this point of A.I. development, it seems that VantagePoint is providing human stock traders with a temporary competitive advantage over those other human stock traders who are still trying to predict market downturns using just their own N.I. brains! Therefore, this present-day competitive advantage of some human traders using A.I. to outwit other human traders, may be practical and useful, now! But what about the future, where uncontrolled A.I. is allowed to continually evolve? When “Strong AI” appears, will merely human stock traders not even have a chance to compete with it for profits? Will this make future stock trading just the domain of computers and A.I.?
Dear Noble Robo-Witness,
A robot beats humans at their own game – – This time on the ice, Daniela Hernandez declared in a September 24th article appearing within THE WALL STREET JOURNAL. “Robots on the loose in the world are clumsy and sometimes make bad decisions. They trip on sidewalks and fall down stairs and into water fountains.”
CURLY: A ROBOT CHAMPION OF CURLING ON ICE
But then she asks, “What about robots on ice?” In particular, she refers to the sport of curling – – “a team sport in which human players use a stick to grab, maneuver and propel a 40-pound puck, or stone, across the ice toward a red-blue target that resembles a bull’s-eye.” Curly, a new white, turtle-shaped robot, has “an artificially intelligent brain that can quickly assess and map the icy environment, the state of play and optimal strategies for winning.” According to a recently published paper in the journal, SCIENCE ROBOTICS, Curly beat a group of elite South Korean players, three times out of four.
Hernandez gushes that, “Curly’s triumph is the latest example of machines besting humans at their own games – – but it marks an important step forward: Other big wins for the robots have been in digital environments, where the physics of the real world didn’t get in the way.”
So, exactly what was this research trying to accomplish? To quote the author, “. . . AI developers and roboticists say the technology is interesting and applicable to domains such as self-driving cars or drones . . .”
“‘These special matches are a good example of collaborative robots in the real world,’ said Seong-Whan Lee, lead author of the Curly study. ‘It is not about humans versus robots[,] but rather humans and robots cooperating.'”
I say, “HOGWASH! Curly is a non-collaborative robot that competes against human beings as they play a still-human sport on the ice! Do we really think that these damn roboticists aren’t going to keep working until THEIR precious robots consistently beat us mere humans with NI (Natural Intelligence), at almost everything we do?” Maybe, someday in the future, I pray that enough of my fellow human beings will finally stop being such naive, tech-addicted fools, and AT LONG LAST, wake up to the Dangerous Truth posed by the totally-uncontrolled development of robots and AI – – in nearly ALL fields of formerly human-only endeavor!
Dear Noble Robo-Witness,
On September 9th, USA TODAY contained an odd article by Marc Saltzman: These robots will do your housework. You may recall a recent, related post we had on 8/31/20: Robots Now Appearing As Hotel “Workers”! Well, this time, those damn robots are invading our homes, rather than our workplaces!
Saltzman opens his article with a not-very-hidden, Robo-sales job: “Now that society is cautiously opening up ahead of the fall season, the last thing you want to do is more work around the house. Seriously, would you rather scrub your kitchen floors or sip a cocktail with friends on a rooftop patio to toast the end of the weirdest summer on record? . . . . . . . Fortunately, technology can help, so you can focus on what matters. From window- and floor-washing robots to autonomous lawn-cutting machines, this may be the year you invest in a domestic device.”
Please observe that while Saltzman is claiming that, “society is cautiously opening up,” he is very uncautiously recommending that, at “the end of the weirdest summer on record,” we start buying a whole bunch of robots to do our housework! And, if we really think about it, isn’t this foolish “robo-recommendation” simply another example of this being “the weirdest summer on record?” He follows this up with the weird remark that, “OK, so we’re not talking Rosie the Robot – – the mechanical housekeeper who petered around ‘The Jetsons’ family home in the classic ’60s cartoon – – but you might be surprised what’s out there.”
If you recall, Dear Witness, Rosie the Robot was just a humanoid (“human-like”) robot in a TV cartoon – – NOT a household robot operating in the REAL world! – – Why? The obvious reason is that humanoid robots are very dangerous, in that they are basically stating that natural humans with bodies and a soul or spirit, are essentially the same as human-like MACHINES! Saltzman and other foolhardy technophiles (“abnormal lovers of technology”), nevertheless, are now very busily trying to hoodwink and cleverly seduce us into buying a bunch of domestic robots to do all of the work around our house! What follows, is a brief description of the various types of partial “Household Rosies” that Saltzman recommends.
“Robotic vacuum cleaners make up the biggest selection of home robots. These circular suckers navigate around your home – – ideal for carpet, tile and wood floors – – and suck up dirt, dust, crumbs and pet hair (and allergens, too). iRobot’s Roomba family is probably the best known . . . . .”
“You can start the clean in one of four ways: pressing the button on top of the unit, tapping the app, setting a schedule . . ., or using your voice with an Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant speaker (e.g. ‘Ask Roomba to start cleaning’).'” I find such spoken human directions to a robot, which then responds to your voice, to be an especially terrifying and troublesome development! I really have to question the wisdom of allowing very naive human beings, who have a brain with Natural Intelligence, to essentially become the same thing as robots, which have a Control Center operating with Artificial Intelligence! This recent trend of “talking” directly to machines – – as if they were the same as human beings – – is basically setting us up to unconsciously equate robots with human beings! In the future, will we not be able to destroy such a talking robot, because it has become so much like us?
FLOOR AND WINDOW WASHING ROBOTS
“And what about mopping ‘bots? The Braava Jet M6 ($399) helps clean your hardwood floors, whether you’re there or not, so your home is kept spotless. . . . . . As with many of the Roomba robots, this autonomous mopper uses artificial intelligence to get to know your home’s floor plan and optimize its clean accordingly.” Well, I, for one, do NOT like the basic idea of a robot with AI “getting to know” my home’s floor plan – – especially when it’s autonomously mopping and spying on my house – – even when I’m not there!
“Also for $449 is a window-washing robot called Winbot X by Ecovacs. While it might freak you out if you see this thing crawling up your windows, the aptly-named Winbot could lend you a helping hand – – especially when it comes to cleaning hard to reach areas outside of your home.” So, do we really want to have this creepy robot “crawling up our windows”? At least the author was honest enough to admit that it might “freak us out”! – – NO THANKS!
“These waterproof mowers can quietly cut your grass with its electric motor (yes, even at night) and will return on its own to the charging station, power up and then continue mowing. Anti-theft alarms will prevent anyone from lifting your ‘bot.” I certainly get the creeps whenever I think about seeing a robot lawn mower going back-and-forth across my lawn, all by itself! This would especially be true, if I looked out a window and gulped while I saw this Mechanical Monster circling around my yard in the dark, at night! Couldn’t that even be dangerous, to someone walking across my yard after sunset?
SMART WATER SENSORS
“While not a robot, per se, Flo by Moen Shutoff ($499) might be considered a security system for your home’s water supply. It’s a smart valve that proactively identifies problems before they become a headache – – such as if a pipe bursts, or if a tap is left running – – and then automatically turns off the water supply before notifying you on an app.”
Note that the smart water sensor is supposed to “proactively identify” problems “before they become a headache.” Well, let us expand this reasoning, and conclude that such household robots will likely promote such future problems as excessive laziness, human obesity, and an eventual “Robo-Take Over” of many household tasks that are better left to us human beings! If these household robots are widely adopted, however, you can expect them to continually “evolve in place,” becoming more and more sophisticated, until THEIR VERY PRESENCE becomes a real EXISTENTIAL headache, and even a real THREAT to you and your family!
Finally, what about these robots stealing away the jobs of human workers who now mow our lawns, wash our windows, and clean our floors? What are these often less-fortunate fellow humans (many from other disadvantaged countries) supposed to do for a living, when robots have essentially replaced MOST or ALL of our natural HUMAN LABOR?
Dear Noble Robo-Witness,
Please consult the SPECIAL FEATURES section of our website, where you can read the latest (September, 2020) news article about Robowatch and Dr. Layman. This comes from the cover article of the TOP 100 REGISTRY of Business Leaders & Professionals, 2020. Here you will see the cover photo, which shows Dr. Dale Layman, Founder of Robowatch LLC, Fighting the War Against A.I. In this important Cover Story, you can find out what Dr. Layman means when he claims that there are TWO “NATIONAL EMERGENCIES” (2020-2030), facing All Mankind!
In addition, please read our latest Press Release, which has already been posted at PR.com: The Honorable Dr. Dale Layman, Founder of Robowatch, L.L.C., is Recognized as the 2020 Humanitarian of the Year by Top 100 Registry, Inc. Kindly share this important information, with many others!
FYI, this represents the third year in a row (2018, 2019, and 2020) that Dr. Layman and Robowatch have been honored as the Cover Story for the TOP 100 REGISTRY! (At this point, we highly recommend that you go back and review the earlier, 2018 and 2019, Cover Stories, as well! This series of Cover Features presents a trilogy of important news about the apparently UNSTOPPABLE EVOLUTION OF ROBOTS, COMPUTERS, AND A.I.!)