Taking the Long View of Nanotechnology’s Societal Implications
Sepehr Ghazinoory, Fatemeh Saghafi, and Sahar Kousari
by Marc Canellas and Rachel Haga
Autonomous weapons systems (AWS) are already here. Although some of the colloquial names for AWS may suggest science fiction (killer robots , , terminators , and cyborg assassins ), these systems are anything but fiction. Since the 1970s the U.S. Navy’s “Phalanx” Close-In Weapon System has been capable of “autonomously performing its own search, detect, evaluation, track, engage and kill assessment functions” against high-speed threats such as missiles, ships, aircraft, and helicopters . Not limited to the U.S., Germany has developed a similar land vehicle defense system, the Active Vehicle Protection System, which has a reaction time of less than 400 ms when launching fragmentation grenades against incoming missiles .
AWS are possible due to the convergence of new technology supply and well-established military demand . The drivers of military demand can be summed up as force multiplication, expanding the battle-space, extending the warfighters’ reach, and casualty reduction . As for technology supply, over the past three decades, sensors and transmitters have decreased in cost while increasing in functionality. As a result, AWS sit at the intersection of novel automation capable of making decisions without humans and established lethal weapons.
CLICK ON EACH PAGE FOLLOWING TO VIEW AND READ:
VOL. 35, NO. 2, JUNE 2016
SPECIAL SECTION—Rise of the Robots:
Technology and Social Disruption
3 Do We Just “Build Stuff”?
Call for Papers
4 ISTAS 2017 — Kerala, India
5 When Uber Cars Become Driverless: “They Won’t Need No Driver”
11 Marvin Minsky 1927–2016
12 Perfecting Sound
15 America’s Assembly Line
18 Rise of the Robots
20 The Cybernetics Moment
23 Military Robots: Mapping the Moral Landscape
25 Digital Militarism
29 When Smart Is Not: Technology and Michio Kaku’s The Future of the Mind
28 Social Network Neutrality, Anyone?
Nicholas Paul Sheppard
32 RFID Implant Developments: Where are We Headed and Why?
Sharon Rose Bradley-Munn
86 Are Technologies Innocent? Part Three: The Passive Instrument Argument*
Michael Arnold and Christopher Pearce
34 GM Ignition Switch Recall: Too Little Too Late?
36 Toyota: Not So Fast, Guys
38 Uber Is Built on Trust
News and Notes
39 ISTAS 2016: An Update
88 Militarized Zones
SPECIAL SECTION FEATURES
40_ Will My Next Car Be a Libertarian or a Utilitarian? Who Will Decide?*
46_ Sex Robot Matters — Slavery, the Prostituted, and the Rights of Machines*
54_ Robot Enhanced Therapy for Children with Autism Disorders: Measuring Ethical Acceptability*
Andreea Peca, Mark Coeckelbergh, Ramona Simut, Cristina Costescu, Sebastian Pintea, Daniel David, and Bram Vanderborght
67_ Flying Ad-Hoc Networks: Technological and Social Implications*
Wajiya Zafar and Bilal Muhammad Khan
Stephanie Winkler and Sherali Zeadally
* Refereed articles.
IEEE Technology and Society Magazine
Volume 34, Number 4, December 2015
3 Improving Our “Engineering-Crazed” Image
4 Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks
6 Faxed: The Rise and Fall of the Fax Machine
9 Reflecting on the Contribution of T&S Magazine to the IEEE
15 Technology and Change
16 On the Road with Rick Sare… and Google Glass
17 Shakespeare, Social Media and Social Networks
Fernando A. Crespo, Sigifredo Laengle, Paula Baldwin Lind and Víctor Hugo Masías
20 Corporate Individualism – Changing the Face of Capitalism
László G. Lovászy
23 Multimedia and Gaming Technologies for Telerehabilitation of Motor Disabilities
Andrea Proietti, Marco Paoloni, Massimo Panella, Luca Liparulo and Rosa Altilio
31 MoodTrek – A New App to Improve Mental HealthCare
Ganesh Gopalakrishna and Srivam Chellappan
33 Alternative Planning and Land Administration for Future Smart Cities
Soheil Sabri, Abbas Rajabifard, Serene Ho, Mohammad-Reza Namazi-Rad, and Christopher Pettit
36 Pharmaco-Electronics Emerge
Joseph R. Carvalko
41 Blockchain Thinking*
63 Information Paradox*
Levent V. Orman
54 Held Captive in the Cyberworld
104 Digitus Secundus: The Swipe
74_ The Value of Accountability in the Cloud*
Wouter M.P. Steijn and Maartje G.H. Niezen
83_ Shaping Our Technological Futures*
Reihana Mohideen and Rob Evans
88_ Driver Distraction from Dashboard and Wearable Interfaces*
100_ Are Technologies Innocent?*
Michael Arnold and Christopher Pearce
On the cover: Blockchain Thinking. English Wikipedia/The Opte Project/Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Generic license.
In addition to car’s using network connections to call for assistance, here is a natural consequence — your car may notify police of an accident, in this case a driver leaving a hit-and-run situation. My insurance company offered to add a device to my car that would allow them to increase my rates if they go faster than they think I should. Some insurance companies will raise your rates if you exceed their limit (70 MPH) even in areas where the legal limit is higher (Colorado, Wyoming, etc. have 75+ posted limits). A phone company is promoting a device to add into your car to provide similar capabilities (presented for safety and comfort rationale.)
So what are the possibilities?
- Detect accident situations and have emergency response arrive even if you are unable to act — and as noted above this may also detect hit-and-run accidents.
- Provide a channel for you to communicate situations like “need roadside assistance” or “report roadside problem”.
- Monitor car performance characteristics and notify user (shop?) of out-of-spec conditions
- Using this same “diagnostic port”, taking remote control of car
- Police action – to stop driver from escaping
- Ill-intended action, to cause car to lose control
So, in line with the season, your car is making a list, checking it twice and going to report if you are naughty or nice —
One additional article from the WSJ Dec. 10th on the Battle between car manufacturers and smartphone companies for control of the car-network environment. The corporate view, from Don Butler, Ford Motor’s Director of Connected Vehicles: “We are competing for mind-share inside the vehicle.” Or as the WSJ says, “Car makers are loath to give up key information and entertainment links… and potentially to earn revenue by selling information and mobile connectivity.” In short, the folks directing the future of connected vehicles are not focusing on the list of possibilities and considerations above.