[extropy-chat] Video of Fighting Humanoid Robots!

Emlyn emlynoregan at gmail.com
Mon Aug 23 03:11:13 UTC 2004

On Sun, 22 Aug 2004 19:36:40 -0700 (PDT), Adrian Tymes
<wingcat at pacbell.net> wrote:
> --- Emlyn <emlynoregan at gmail.com> wrote:
> > ... apparently humanoid robots can do backflips and
> > cartwheels. I had
> > trouble believing my eyes. Incredible (and cool as
> > f*?k).
> A chain of thought I've been having, which this
> reinforces:
> Take basic robotics research, as applied to humanoid
> frames.  Follow it on its current path until, for
> whatever purpose (entertainment, military, etc.),
> human-sized, human-shaped robots with
> human-equivalent manipulation ability become
> available.  The hardware is what's important here; the
> software would, say, allow it to perform
> pre-programmed dance steps or walk along a path as a
> "human drone" for military training, but it would be
> no more creative or free willed than today's robots.
> Is there any logical doubt, given these toys being
> available today, that this is likely within the next
> 20 years?  (Being conservative here - less than 10
> might be more accurate.)
> If not, then this frame will likely have some cargo
> capacity somewhere within its body - probably its head
> and/or torso.  And some extra power capacity, enough
> to power the life support unit for a brain, and wire
> it up to the sensors and motors, and possible hormone
> synthesizers to replicate the missing organs (as part
> of life support).  If there's a lot of cargo capacity,
> more of the body can be encapsulated as a preliminary
> measure, while researching how to support just the
> brain (primarily, figuring out the hormone balance and
> neuron wiring).  Is there any logical doubt that this
> would be likely within 20 years of the above?  (Again,
> being conservative.)
> Once that happens, there exists a powerful symbol for
> taking the last step, which is likely to focus and
> drive AI research into uploads.  Which therefore makes
> this seem the most likely "default" path to SIs, if
> nothing is done to force another path before then.  As
> nasty as human beings can be towards one another, few
> - and none that are likely to gather the resources to
> be among the first uploads - are as sociopathic as
> "pure" AIs, which would have no pre-AI socialization,
> are feared by some to be.  (One might take it a bit
> further and wonder if research into "pure" AIs thus
> makes anti-Friendly AIs actually more likely, but at
> this early stage, that's way too difficult to
> determine to be worth any action, or even much serious
> thought...again, at this time.)
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I'd like to see how far this stuff ("toy" humanoid robots) is
informing the area of medical prostheses for the disabled. If I were a
quadriplegic or similar, I'd be looking at these 'bots and rubbing my
hands together (urr) with glee. And the timeframes that Adrian
mentions seem realistic; I'd be thinking I could be mobile again
within a decade.

We'll know we're moving in the right direction when we see the ads for
the televised grudge match... "This Saturday Night on MechWars...
Reeve vs Hawking! See them slug it out 'bot style, in the Beauty vs
Brains contest of the millenium!"


http://emlynoregan.com   * blogs * music * software *

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