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  • kaitlyndudleycurti

Robot Hygiene

Updated: Jan 10, 2022

My son predicts that AI androids would never create better, upgraded, more intelligent AI, since the more advanced would surely scorn and then eliminate the less advanced first generation. If AI wouldn’t create AI, why should we?

When we can clearly see the benefit of a new technology, we should ask about the costs to human dignity, freedom, and privacy.

After all, humanity has abused every technological advance it has ever made, from the scythe to the splitting of atoms.

It seems to me that these New Towers of Babel are being built for man’s glory without reference either to God or to probable, negative unintended consequences.

Some Robot News, i.e., The Future Got Here Yesterday

- Can some robots reproduce using frog eggs? Go here for an unsettling answer.

- Is it too late to stop research on killer robots? Yes, and the USA (among others) is making sure of it.

- Could AI help you euthanize yourself? You betcha.

- What is Elon Musk up to, and should I get a neuralink when they are commercially available?

- Related: How much virtual reality is too much?

But What Can I Do About It?

1. You can improve your robot hygiene: - Stop using human names (like Siri and Alexa) for software programs and robots (including vacuums and mowers)

- Rely less on computers whenever possible

2. Volunteer to help older people, especially those with dementia. This idea comes from Charles Camosy in his book Losing Our Dignity: “Refuse to have family members cared for by robots when other options are available. Once normalized, the Trojan horse of computer caregivers will fundamentally change our relationship to these (and other) vulnerable populations.” (vide p. 165)

3. Stay abreast of robotics/AI news. Doing so is equal parts entertaining and terrifying - like this dance video.

4. Ask yourself and others the big questions, e.g., What laws should govern robotics/AI research and implementation? Should a democratic government fund development of intelligent machines, and how much influence, if any, should belong to voters? Are you, as a consumer, engaging the implicit ethical questions associated with robotics/AI, or are you along for the ride to whatever destination Big Tech has in mind?

5. Read good Sci Fi literature, even the old stuff. Prophets sometimes do their best work in novels and short stories. Philip K. Dick, Walter M. Miller, Jr, and Ray Bradbury are dead, but they can still help you think through what world we are making for ourselves and our children.

Photo: Adam Lukomski on

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