For reasons that won’t surprise anyone, Lawfare deals a lot with automation and robotic technologies, ranging from cyber to big data to military robotics. So readers might be interested to learn of next year’s We Robot 2014, the third annual conference devoted to the intersection of law, society, and technologies of robotics and automation. The theme is “Risks and Opportunities,” meaning the risks and opportunities offered by robots as they come more closely into contact with human beings, in the home, school, workplace, but als
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You can find the interim report---the final won't be submitted to the U.N. Human Rights Council until 2014, apparently---here.
There's a good bit to pore over in the paper authored by Emmerson, with whom Lawfare chatted during his May fact-finding trip to the United States.
The Daily Mail ran the following picture in this article about the raid on the home of alleged Ricin-mailer Kevin Curtis:
Notice the device the guy on his knees is holding.
I, for one, welcome our eagle-claw grasping robot overlords…
A few months ago, I attended a robotics conference in Edina, Minnesota, invited by a gentleman named Andrew Borene, who helped organize it. There were a lot of impressive robots at the conference. But in many ways, the one that impressed me the most was one made by the company for which Andrew works, ReconRobotics. Tiny, light, and yes, throwable---literally---by tactical forces, it sends back to soldiers or law enforcement high-quality video and, in later models, audio from potentially hostile environments.
Speaking of Wired Danger Room, check this out: A robotic dog that tosses cinderblocks around with its head. Spencer Ackerman explains:
Flesh-and-blood dogs merely fetch. The robotic pooch that Darpa funded can throw.
Boston Dynamics’ BigDog started life as a headless four-legged robot capable of hauling soldiers’ gear along rough and uneven terrain. The BigDog’s upgrades and follow-on robots are expanding the boundaries of robotic motion, initially with cash from Darpa’s Tactical Technology Office.
Over at Slate, Torie Bosch has an interview with a cyborg about, well, cyborg rights. It's very interesting, and it goes to an issue I've been thinking about for a while. We think of cyborgs as inherently requiring physical connectedness between human and machine.
Over at Forbes.com, Greg McNeal takes a break from guest blogging for Lawfare to body slam Human Rights Watch over its "killer robots" campaign.
Just what you need in life: Your very own cybernetic cockroach. Now, thanks to the folks at an outfit called "Backyard Brains" ("Neuroscience for Everyone!"), you can have one.
No, I am not making this up. It's the Roboroach, which can be yours for only $99.99:
A few weeks ago, Tom Malinowski of Human Rights Watch had a thoughtful and serious---if sometimes playful---exchange with Matt, Ken, and me over fully autonomous weapons systems. But there seems to be another, less serious, side of Human Rights Watch's advocacy on the subject, a grass-roots campaign that is quite extreme in its rhetoric and tone. The other day, a Brookings colleague forwarded me an email she had received from human rights way.