How many times do I have to visit all the artificial intelligence and robotics labs in the world, stand and shake my head outside the window for an hour, before anyone will listen to me? How many Amazon Echos do I have to smash in Selfridges before the world will understand? How many Tamagotchis do I have to buy off eBay just so that I can encase them in concrete and bury them in the desert, before the scientific community will take heed of my warning?
STOP GIVING ROBOTS THE POWER OF THOUGHT. It’s a dumb idea, and it’ll be the end of me, you, and probably all the cats and dogs and rabbits and stuff, too.
Or at least it will eventually, because I don’t think we’re quite there yet, as the following story will attest.
Basically, a Knightscope security robot over in DC was introduced at a fancy office building, and gifted artificial intelligence. Its job was to patrol the building, erm, intimidating(?) would-be criminals, by being all scary like this:
So yeah, this particular robot obviously realised that it was not, in fact, terrifying on the level of Robocop or the Terminator, so decided it would quit rather dramatically. By driving straight into a water fountain and drowning.
Our D.C. office building got a security robot. It drowned itself.— Bilal Farooqui (@bilalfarooqui) July 17, 2017
We were promised flying cars, instead we got suicidal robots. pic.twitter.com/rGLTAWZMjn
Famously, robots and water don’t mix, so this sad robot knew exactly what it was doing when it walked into the sea. Or at least it may appear that way on the surface – I have another theory.
You see those steps going down into the pool there? Maybe all it wanted was a cooling dip? Not enough to short-circuit, just enough to wind down a bit on its lunch break.
Either way, RIP Security Butt Plug, you will be missed.