“Internet of Things (IoT)”

So What Is The Internet Of Things?

Simply put, this is the concept of basically connecting any device with an on and off switch to the Internet (and/or to each other). This includes everything from cellphones, coffee makers, washing machines, headphones, lamps, wearable devices and almost anything else you can think of.  This also applies to components of machines, for example a jet engine of an airplane or the drill of an oil rig. As I mentioned, if it has an on and off switch then chances are it can be a part of the IoT.  The analyst firm Gartner says that by 2020 there will be over 26 billion connected devices… That’s a lot of connections (some even estimate this number to be much higher, over 100 billion).  The IoT is a giant network of connected “things” (which also includes people).  The relationship will be between people-people, people-things, and things-things.

So much of the chatter has been focused on machine-to-machine communication (M2M): devices talking to like devices. But a machine is an instrument, it’s a tool, it’s something that’s physically doing something. When we talk about making machines “smart,” we’re not referring strictly to M2M. We’re talking about sensors.

A sensor is not a machine. It doesn’t do anything in the same sense that a machine does. It measures, it evaluates; in short, it gathers data. The Internet of Things really comes together with the connection of sensors and machines. That is to say, the real value that the Internet of Things creates is at the intersection of gathering data and leveraging it. All the information gathered by all the sensors in the world isn’t worth very much if there isn’t an infrastructure in place to analyze it in real time.

 Cloud-based applications are the key to using leveraged data. The Internet of Things doesn’t function without cloud-based applications to interpret and transmit the data coming from all these sensors. The cloud is what enables the apps to go to work for you anytime, anywhere.

How Does This Impact You?

                     The new rule for the future is going to be, “Anything that can be connected, will be connected.” But why on earth would you want so many connected devices talking to each other? There are many examples for what this might look like or what the potential value might be. Say for example you are on your way to a meeting; your car could have access to your calendar and already know the best route to take. If the traffic is heavy your car might send a text to the other party notifying them that you will be late. What if your alarm clock wakes up you at 6 a.m. and then notifies your coffee maker to start brewing coffee for you? What if your office equipment knew when it was running low on supplies and automatically re-ordered more?  What if the wearable device you used in the workplace could tell you when and where you were most active and productive and shared that information with other devices that you used while working?

Let’s see another example. In 2007, a bridge collapsed in Minnesota, killing many people, because of steel plates that were inadequate to handle the bridge’s load. When we rebuild bridges, we can use smart cement: cement equipped with sensors to monitor stresses, cracks, and warpages. This is cement that alerts us to fix problems before they cause a catastrophe. And these technologies aren’t limited to the bridge’s structure.

If there’s ice on the bridge, the same sensors in the concrete will detect it and communicate the information via the wireless internet to your car. Once your car knows there’s a hazard ahead, it will instruct the driver to slow down, and if the driver doesn’t, then the car will slow down for him. This is just one of the ways that sensor-to-machine and machine-to-machine communication can take place. Sensors on the bridge connect to machines in the car: we turn information into action.

On a broader scale, the IoT can be applied to things like transportation networks: “smart cities” which can help us reduce waste and improve efficiency for things such as energy use; this helping us understand and improve how we work and live.

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You might start to see the implications here. What can you achieve when a smart car and a smart city grid start talking to each other? We’re going to have traffic flow optimization, because instead of just having stoplights on fixed timers, we’ll have smart stoplights that can respond to changes in traffic flow. Traffic and street conditions will be communicated to drivers, rerouting them around areas that are congested, snowed-in, or tied up in construction.

So now we have sensors monitoring and tracking all sorts of data; we have cloud-based apps translating that data into useful intelligence and transmitting it to machines on the ground, enabling mobile, real-time responses. And thus bridges become smart bridges, and cars smart cars. And soon, we have smart cities, and….

Okay. What are the advantages here? What are the savings? What industries can this be applied to?

Here’s what I mean when I say people never think big enough. This isn’t just about money savings. It’s not about bridges, and it’s not about cities. This is a huge and fundamental shift. When we start making things intelligent, it’s going to be a major engine for creating new products and new services.

Of all the technology trends that are taking place right now, perhaps the biggest one is the Internet of Things; it’s the one that’s going to give us the most disruption as well as the most opportunity over the next five years. In my next post in this two-part series, we’ll explore just how big this is going to be.

The reality is that the IoT allows for virtually endless opportunities and connections to take place, many of which we can’t even think of or fully understand the impact of today. It’s not hard to see how and why the IoT is such a hot topic today; it certainly opens the door to a lot of opportunities but also to many challenges. Security is a big issue that is oftentimes brought up. With billions of devices being connected together, what can people do to make sure that their information stays secure? Will someone be able to hack into your toaster and thereby get access to your entire network? The IoT also opens up companies all over the world to more security threats. Then we have the issue of privacy and data sharing.

There are many advantages about Internet of Things (IoT) mentioned above but let us not forget the bad things here. What if it can be use in a way that can make danger to anyone? Or what if because of the information going through to these devices would make them have their own neural schema or we say they will have their own minds? These things might also happen but let us just educate ourselves on the good things, this IoT can contribute and prevent other purposes of use (in a bad way).

Sources:

 

Posted here by:

Rusel II B. Feliscuzo

BSIT III

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Internet Regulation

Internet regulation is basically restricting or controlling access to certain aspects or information. Internet regulation consists of: Censorship of data, and controlling aspects of the Internet such as domain registration, IP address control and more.

Most of the Internet regulation is imposed by the Government in an effort to protect the best interest of the general public and is concerned with some form of censorship. Other forms of Internet regulation is domain registration, IP address control, etc. In domain registration, once a domain is purchased the Webmaster’s address has to be registered at the time of purchase. A governmental agency can track someone down if they put up information, that the government considers unacceptable. IP address is you Internet identity when you are connected to the web. It is synonymous to a postal address. It consists of a 32 bit binary number that is denoted by XXX.XXX.XXX.XXX, and is used in the forwarding of data to your host, when requested. The giving out or allocation of the IP address is done by an agency by geographical location, and so it is not portable. This means that if you change your location, then your IP address will change with it. It is a way the federal government can track you down if you are involved in illegal activities on the net.

The internet is censored in order to enable adults to protect children from unsuitable material.An analogous situation is an organization’s management controlling their employees’ use of computers at work. Software on the user’s computer is the only practical way to control access with the flexibility required for differing children. A PICS based system will be inexpensive or free for users and does require new laws or government intervention – although funding for ratings services would probably accelerate it. Censorship of Internet communications can not be practically achieved, it would be far too inflexible to suit the many approaches to “child suitability” which responsible adults have for the various children in their care, and would constrict all Internet Communications to a single “child-safe” level.

The restriction of for example “how to make a bomb” via the Internet is also controversial, however, any good library has lots of explosives information. PICS might be able to stop some of this information flowing via the Internet. However, the amount of information in general is increasing and even with restrictions information of this sort will increase.

Restrictions might enable adults to control their own access to material so they do not stumble across things (advertising, violence, erotica/pornography, religious or political material etc.), which offend them. This enables community standards to be maintained – the standards of the particular community, which the person chooses to be a member of.

-Some people propose to maintain one particular set of “Community Standards” by making it possible to restrict certain material. The proposition that there is one “Community Standard” for all Americans is difficult to sustain (depending on what the proposed standard entails) because there are so many communities

Even if censorship of Internet communications could practically be achieved, it would be far too inflexible to suit the community standards of any country, any particular community or any particular person’s position in that community.

The government imposing a single set of restrictions on the communications of all adults, where the aim is to restrict communication of material including that, which can be legally possessed. This is plain, ordinary censorship, whether it concerns erotica, or material, which is critical of governments or religions.

For instance some censorship proponents refer to “obscene” materials, as if a single definition of obscenity exists. Those proposing outright censorship argue that the communication of all citizens should be restricted according to some single “Community Standard” for:

-Their own good.

-The good of society in general. (See Peter Webb’s speech and his references to this argument by Lord Devlin.)

-The good of children

-Or some mixture of these three reasons.

Some of the most common methods for information regulation is through ISP’s filtration channels. Many ISP’s AOL, being one of the top, provide a built in method for which parents can restrict access to certain sites containing information that they do not want to see.

There is also software that can be downloaded and installed on personal computers that do the same job of filtering material viewed on the web. The biggest of all is governmental laws that restrict people from viewing certain information on the web.

Especially for the pornographic sites, there is a law that requires password authentication to enter the site. There are numerous laws enforced by the government that basically restricts information. They are all in place because the government feels that it is dangerous for society to have easy access to the information in question.

Government has been the foremost in the restriction of information. There have been numerous committees and agencies set up primarily to perform this task or upholding the laws that have been established for this reason.

Most of the bills that have been introduced in congress regarding Internet regulation have failed. The reason being that it is so closely connected with the first amendment that it will naturally be met with firm opposition.

Posted by: Delicana, Flora mae

 

Human Rights

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Human rights are rights inherent to all human beings, whatever our nationality, place of residence, sex, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, language, or any other status. We are all equally entitled to our human rights without discrimination. These rights are all interrelated, interdependent and indivisible.

Universal human rights are often expressed and guaranteed by law, in the forms of treaties, customary international law , general principles and other sources of international law. International human rights law lays down obligations of Governments to act in certain ways or to refrain from certain acts, in order to promote and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms of individuals or groups.

Universal and inalienable

The principle of universality of human rights is the cornerstone of international human rights law. This principle, as first emphasized in the Universal Declaration on Human Rights in 1948, has been reiterated in numerous international human rights conventions, declarations, and resolutions. The 1993 Vienna World Conference on Human Rights, for example, noted that it is the duty of States to promote and protect all human rights and fundamental freedoms, regardless of their political, economic and cultural systems.

All States have ratified at least one, and 80% of States have ratified four or more, of the core human rights treaties, reflecting consent of States which creates legal obligations for them and giving concrete expression to universality. Some fundamental human rights norms enjoy universal protection by customary international law across all boundaries and civilizations.

Human rights are inalienable. They should not be taken away, except in specific situations and according to due process. For example, the right to liberty may be restricted if a person is found guilty of a crime by a court of law.

Interdependent and indivisible

All human rights are indivisible, whether they are civil and political rights, such as the right to life, equality before the law and freedom of expression; economic, social and cultural rights, such as the rights to work, social security and education , or collective rights, such as the rights to development and self-determination, are indivisible, interrelated and interdependent. The improvement of one right facilitates advancement of the others. Likewise, the deprivation of one right adversely affects the others.

Equal and non-discriminatory

Non-discrimination is a cross-cutting principle in international human rights law. The principle is present in all the major human rights treaties and provides the central theme of some of international human rights conventions such as the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women.

The principle applies to everyone in relation to all human rights and freedoms and it prohibits discrimination on the basis of a list of non-exhaustive categories such as sex, race, colour and so on. The principle of non-discrimination is complemented by the principle of equality, as stated in Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.”

Both Rights and Obligations

Human rights entail both rights and obligations. States assume obligations and duties under international law to respect, to protect and to fulfill human rights. The obligation to respect means that States must refrain from interfering with or curtailing the enjoyment of human rights. The obligation to protect requires States to protect individuals and groups against human rights abuses. The obligation to fulfill means that States must take positive action to facilitate the enjoyment of basic human rights. At the individual level, while we are entitled our human rights, we should also respect the human rights of others.

Human Rights Education

Learning that develops the knowledge, skills, and values of human rights in young people with training, dissemination, and information efforts aimed at the building of a universal culture of human rights. Examines human rights issues without bias, from diverse perspectives through a variety of non-formal educational practices; informed critical thinking in multicultural and historical perspectives on struggles for justice and dignity.

Human rights advocacy

We are all entitled to civil and political rights: freedom of expression and association, or equality before the law, and to social, economic, and cultural rights: suchas the right to a dignified life or to participate in all aspects of life. Young people who do not know about their human rights are vulnerable to having them abused and often lack the skills, language and conceptual framework to effectively advocate for them and contribute to the building of a free, just, and peaceful society.

Active youth participation

Democracy provides the natural environment for the protection and effective realization of human rights, and a framework for analyzing and resolving differences. We encourage young people’s active participation in taking responsibility for respecting and defending human rights. The responsibilities of citizens in a democratic society are inseparable from the responsibility to promote human rights.

Human Rights as Inspiration and Empowerment

Human rights are both inspirational and practical. Human rights principles hold up the vision of a free, just, and peaceful world and set minimum standards for how individuals and institutions everywhere should treat people. Human rights also empower people with a framework for action when those minimum standards are not met, for people still have human rights even if the laws or those in power do not recognize or protect them.

We experience our human rights every day in the United States when we worship according to our belief, or choose not to worship at all; when we debate and criticize government policies; when we join a trade union; when we travel to other parts of the country or overseas. Although we usually take these actions for granted, people both here and in other countries do not enjoy all these liberties equally. Human rights violations also occur everyday in this country when a parent abuses a child, when a family is homeless, when a school provides inadequate education, when women are paid less than men, or when one person steals from another.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Rights for all members of the human family were first articulated in 1948 in the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Following the horrific experiences of the Holocaust and World War II, and amid the grinding poverty of much of the world’s population, many people sought to create a document that would capture the hopes, aspirations, and protections to which every person in the world was entitled and ensure that the future of humankind would be different. See Part V, “Appendices,” for the complete text and a simplified version of the UDHR.

The 30 articles of the Declaration together form a comprehensive statement covering economic, social, cultural, political, and civil rights. The document is both universal (it applies to all people everywhere) and indivisible (all rights are equally important to the full realization of one’s humanity). A declaration, however, is not a treaty and lacks any enforcement provisions. Rather it is a statement of intent, a set of principles to which United Nations member states commit themselves in an effort to provide all people a life of human dignity.

Over the past 50 years the Universal Declaration of Human Rights has acquired the status of customary international law because most states treat it as though it were law. However, governments have not applied this customary law equally. Socialist and communist countries of Eastern Europe, Latin America, and Asia have emphasized social welfare rights, such as education, jobs, and health care, but often have limited the political rights of their citizens. The United States has focused on political and civil rights and has advocated strongly against regimes that torture, deny religious freedom, or persecute minorities. On the other hand, the US government rarely recognizes health care, homelessness, environmental pollution, and other social and economic concerns as human rights issues, especially within its own borders.

Across the USA, a movement is rising to challenge this narrow definition of human rights and to restore social, economic, and cultural rights to their rightful place on the human rights agenda. The right to eat is as fundamental as the right not to be tortured or jailed without charges!

Source: Adapted from Pam Costain, “Moving the Agenda Forward,” Connection to the Americas 14.8 (October 1997): 4.

Human Rights Organizations

Many organizations around the world dedicate their efforts to protecting human rights and ending human rights abuses. Major human rights organizations maintain extensive websites documenting violations and calling for remedial action, both at a governmental and grass-roots level. Public support and condemnation of abuses is important to their success, as human rights organizations are most effective when their calls for reform are backed by strong public advocacy. Below are some examples of such groups.

NONGOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS

Globally, the champions of human rights have most often been citizens, not government officials. In particular, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) have played a primary role in focusing the international community on human rights issues.

Source: (http://www.humanrights.com/voices-for-human-rights/human-rights-organizations/non-governmental.html)

  • Edna Mae Buniel

Online Identity

           

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             Internet identity (also called IID), or internet persona is a social identity that an Internet user establishes in online communities and websites. It can also be considered as an actively constructed presentation of oneself. Although some people choose to use their real names online, some Internet users prefer to be anonymous, identifying themselves by means of pseudonyms, which reveal varying amounts of personally identifiable information. An online identity may even be determined by a user’s relationship to a certain social group they are a part of online. Some can even be deceptive about their identity.

            In some online contexts, including Internet forums, online chats, and massively multiplayer online role-playing games(MMORPGs), users can represent themselves visually by choosing an avatar, an icon-sized graphic image. Avatars are one way users express their online identity.Through interaction with other users, an established online identity acquires a reputation, which enables other users to decide whether the identity is worthy of trust.Online identities are associated with users through authentication, which typically requires registration and logging in. Some websites also use the user’s IP address or tracking cookies to identify users.

The concept of the self, and how this is influenced by emerging technologies, are a subject of research in fields such as education, psychology and sociology. The online dis inhibition effect is a notable example, referring to a concept of unwise and uninhibited behaviour on the Internet, arising as a result of anonymity and audience gratification.

Identity expression and identity exposure

             The social web, i.e. the usage of the web to support the social process, represents a space in which people have the possibility to express and expose their identity in a social context. For example, people define their identity explicitly by creating user profiles in social network services such as Facebook or LinkedIn and online dating services. By expressing opinions on blogs and other social media, they define more tacit identities.

              The disclosure of a person’s identity may present certain issues related to privacy. Many people adopt strategies that help them control the disclosure of their personal information online. Some strategies require users to invest considerable effort.

                The emergence of the concept of online identity has raised many questions among academics. Social networking services and online avatars have complicated the concept of identity. Academia has responded to these emerging trends by establishing domains of scholarly research such as techno self studies, which focuses on all aspects of human identity in technological societies.

Online activities may affect our offline personal identity, as well.

Social networks

              Online social networks like Facebook and MySpace allow people to maintain an online identity with some overlap between online and real world context. These identities are often created to reflect a specific aspect or ideal version of themselves. Representations include pictures, communications with other ‘friends’ and membership in network groups. Privacy control settings on social networks are also part of social networking identity.

Benefits

A discussed positive aspect of virtual communities is that people can now present themselves without fear of persecution, whether it is personality traits, behaviours that they are curious about, or the announcement of a real world identity component that has never before been announced.

This freedom results in new opportunities for society as a whole, especially the ability for people to explore the roles of gender and sexuality in a manner that can be harmless, yet interesting and helpful to those undertaking the change. Online identity has given people the opportunity to feel comfortable in wide-ranging roles, some of which may be underlying aspects of the user’s life that the user is unable to portray in the real world.

Online identity has a beneficial effect for minority groups, including ethnic minority populations, people with disabilities, etc. Online identities may help remove prejudices created by stereotypes found in real life, and thus provide a greater sense of inclusion.

Online identity and user’s rights

The future of online anonymity depends on how an identity management infrastructure is developed.Law enforcement officials often express their opposition to online anonymity and pseudonym, which they view as an open invitation to criminals who wish to disguise their identities. Therefore, they call for an identity management infrastructure that would irrevocably tie online identity to a person’s legal identity]; in most such proposals, the system would be developed in tandem with a secure national identity document. Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google, has stated that the Google+ social network is intended to be exactly such an identity system. The controversy resulting from Google+’s policy of requiring users to sign in using legal names has been dubbed the “nymwars”.

Online civil rights advocates, in contrast, argue that there is no need for a privacy-invasive system because technological solutions, such as reputation management systems, are already sufficient and are expected to grow in their sophistication and utility.

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Online_identity

-Judems Daub

Children and the internet

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The Internet is an increasing part of today’s culture, especially for children and youth, for whom schoolwork, online gaming, and social networking are among the most popular activities. However, the lack of common agreement about the right approach to educating and protecting children adds further challenges to a child’s online experience and expression. Additionally, cultural and geographical differences in legal and social norms reflect the fact that there is no universally accepted view of what defines a person as a child, or of what is appropriate for children, making “inappropriate content and behaviour” hard to define.

While some online crimes are cross-border in nature and so require global attention, at a national level, policy approaches to regulating content have so far predominantly employed a range of filtering techniques to limit access to or block Internet content. In addition, while local institutional or individual parental computer level filtering is often advised (and should, principally, be used in preference to network level filtering), neither these efforts nor national and local level filtering methods are 100% effective at regulating undesirable content, as at times they tend to under- or over-block content. Filtering at the network level has additional adverse effects. It is therefore vital for parents, educators, guardians, peers and the state to educate children and young people on risks and responsibilities they may encounter when using the Internet.

Opinion: Now a days although internet helps the children to learn more about life and etc., but we cannot deny that if we over use the internet it will also can affect our life.

Source : http://www.internetsociety.org/children-and-internet

Posted By : Cristina O. Libuna

Concerning About the increase use of robots and their role in the society

THE ROBOTS HAVEN’T just landed in the workplace—they’re expanding skills, moving up the corporate ladder, showing awesome productivity and retention rates, and increasingly shoving aside their human counterparts. One multi-tasker bot, from Momentum Machines, can make (and flip) a gourmet hamburger in 10 seconds and could soon replace an entire McDonalds crew. A manufacturing device from Universal Robots doesn’t just solder, paint, screw, glue, and grasp—it builds new parts for itself on the fly when they wear out or bust. And just this week, Google won a patent to start building worker robots with personalities.

As intelligent machines begin their march on labor and become more sophisticated and specialized than first-generation cousins like Roomba or Siri, they have an outspoken champion in their corner: author and entrepreneur Martin Ford. In his new book, Rise of the Robots, he argues that AI and robotics will soon overhaul our economy.
Rise of the Robots
There’s some logic to the thesis, of course, and other economists such as Andrew (The Second Machine Age) McAfee have sided generally with Ford’s outlook. Oxford University researchers have estimated that 47 percent of U.S. jobs could be automated within the next two decades. And if even half that number is closer to the mark, workers are in for a rude awakening.

In Ford’s vision, a full-on worker revolt is on the horizon, followed by a radically new economic state whereby humans will live more productive and entrepreneurial lives, subsisting on guaranteed incomes generated by our amazing machines. (Don’t laugh — even some conservative influencers believe this may be the ultimate means of solving the wealth-inequality dilemma.)

Sound a little nuts? We thought so—we’re human, after all—so we invited Ford to defend his turf.

Critics say your vision of a jobless future isn’t founded in good research or logic. What makes you so convinced this phenomenon is real?

I see the advances happening in technology and it’s becoming evident that computers, machines, robots, and algorithms are going to be able to do most of the routine, repetitive types of jobs. That’s the essence of what machine learning is all about. What types of jobs are on some level fundamentally predictable? A lot of different skill levels fall into that category. It’s not just about lower-skilled jobs either. People with college degrees, even professional degrees, people like lawyers are doing things that ultimately are predictable. A lot of those jobs are going to be susceptible over time.

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Right now there’s still a lot of debate over it. There are economists who think it’s totally wrong, that problems really stem from things like globalization or the fact that we’ve wiped out unions or haven’t raised the minimum wage. Those are all important, but I tend to believe that technology is a bigger issue, especially as we look to the future.

Eventually I think we’ll get to the point where there’s less debate about whether this is really happening or not. There will be more widespread agreement that it really is a problem and at that point we’ll have to figure out what to do about it.

Aren’t you relying on some pretty radical and unlikely assumptions?

People who are very skeptical tend to look at the historical record. It’s true that the economy has always adapted over time. It has created new kinds of jobs. The classic example of that is agriculture. In the 1800s, 80 percent of the U.S. labor force worked on farms. Today it’s 2 percent. Obviously mechanization didn’t destroy the economy; it made it better off. Food is now really cheap compared to what it was relative to income, and as a result people have money to spend on other things and they’ve transitioned to jobs in other areas. Skeptics say that will happen again.
The agricultural revolution was about specialized technology that couldn’t be implemented in other industries. You couldn’t take the farm machinery and have it go flip hamburgers. Information technology is totally different. It’s a broad-based general purpose technology. There isn’t a new place for all these workers to move.

You can imagine lots of new industries—nanotechnology and synthetic biology—but they won’t employ many people. They’ll use lots of technology, rely on big computing centers, and be heavily automated.

So in the all-automated economy, what will ambitious 20-somethings choose to do with their lives and careers?

My proposed solution is to have some kind of a guaranteed income that incentivizes education. We don’t want people to get halfway through high school and say, ‘Well if I drop out I’m still going to get the same income as everyone else.’

Then I believe that a guaranteed income would actually result in more entrepreneurship. A lot of people would start businesses just as they do today. The problem with these types of businesses you can start online today is it’s hard to put enough together to generate a middle-class income.

If people had an income floor, and if the incentives were such that on top of that they could do other things and still keep that extra money, without having it all taxed away, then I think a lot of people would pursue those opportunities.

There’s a phenomenon called the Peltzman Effect, based on research from an economist at the University of Chicago who studied auto accidents. He found that when you introduce more safety features like seat belts into cars, the number of fatalities and injuries doesn’t drop. The reason is that people compensate for it. When you have a safety net in place, people will take more risks. That probably is true of the economic arena as well.

People say that having a guaranteed income will turn everyone into a slacker and destroy the economy. I think the opposite might be true, that it might push us toward more entrepreneurship and more risk-taking.

-Judems Daub

What Happens to Society When Robots Replace Workers? William H. DavidowMichael S. Malone DECEMBER 10, 2014

dec14_10_81856965The technologies of the past, by replacing human muscle, increased the value of human effort – and in the process drove rapid economic progress. Those of the future, by substituting for man’s senses and brain, will accelerate that process – but at the risk of creating millions of citizens who are simply unable to contribute economically, and with greater damage to an already declining middle class.

Estimates of general rates of technological progress are always imprecise, but it is fair to say that, in the past, progress came more slowly. Henry Adams, the historian, measured technological progress by the power generated from coal, and estimated that power output doubled every ten years between 1840 and 1900, a compounded rate of progress of about 7% per year. The reality was probably much less. For example, in 1848, the world record for rail speed reached 60 miles per hour. A century later, commercial aircraft could carry passengers at speeds approaching 600 miles per hour, a rate of progress of only about 2% per year.

By contrast, progress today comes rapidly. Consider the numbers for information storage density in computer memory. Between 1960 and 2003, those densities increased by a factor of five million, at times progressing at a rate of 60% per year. At the same time, true to Moore’s Law, semiconductor technology has been progressing at a 40% rate for more than 50 years. These rates of progress are embedded in the creation of intelligent machines, from robots to automobiles to drones, that will soon dominate the global economy – and in the process drive down the value of human labor with astonishing speed.

This is why we will soon be looking at hordes of citizens of zero economic value. Figuring out how to deal with the impacts of this development will be the greatest challenge facing free market economies in this century.

If you doubt the march of worker-replacing technology, look at Foxconn, the world’s largest contract manufacturer. It employs more than one million workers in China. In 2011, the company installed 10,000 robots, called Foxbots. Today, the company is installing them at a rate of 30,000 per year. Each robot costs about $20,000 and is used to perform routine jobs such as spraying, welding, and assembly. On June 26, 2013, Terry Gou, Foxconn’s CEO, told his annual meeting that “We have over one million workers. In the future we will add one million robotic workers.” This means, of course, that the company will avoid hiring those next million human workers.

Just imagine what a Foxbot will soon be able to do if Moore’s Law holds steady and we continue to see performance leaps of 40% per year. Baxter, a $22,000 robot that just got a software upgrade, is being produced in quantities of 500 per year. A few years from now, a much smarter Baxter produced in quantities of 10,000 might cost less than $5,000. At that price, even the lowest-paid workers in the least developed countries might not be able to compete.

To be sure, technological progress has always displaced workers. But it also has created new opportunities for human employment, at an even a faster rate. This time, things may be very different – especially as the Internet of Things takes the human factor out of so many transactions and decisions. The “Second Economy” (the term used by economist Brian Arthur to describe the portion of the economy where computers transact business only with other computers) is upon us. It is, quite simply, the virtual economy, and one of its main byproducts is the replacement of workers with intelligent machines powered by sophisticated code. This booming Second Economy is brimming with optimistic entrepreneurs, and already spawning a new generation of billionaires. In fact, the booming Second Economy will probably drive much of the economic growth in the coming decades.

And here is the even more sobering news: Arthur speculates that in a little more than ten years, 2025, this Second Economy may be as large as the original “first” economy was in 1995 – about $7.6 trillion. If the Second Economy does achieve that rate of growth, it will be replacing the work of approximately 100 million workers. To put that number in perspective, the current total employed civilian labor force today is 146 million. A sizeable fraction of those replaced jobs will be made up by new ones in the Second Economy. But not all of them. Left behind may be as many as 40 million citizens of no economic value in the U.S alone. The dislocations will be profound.

Suppose, today, that the robots and smart machines of the Second Economy are only capable of doing the work of a person of average intelligence – that is, an IQ of 100. Imagine that the technology in those machines continues to improve at the current rate. Suppose further that this rate of technological progress raises the IQ of these machines by 1.5 points per year. By 2025 these machines will have an IQ greater than 90% of the U.S. population. That 15 point increase in IQ over ten years would put another 50 million jobs within reach of smart machines.

Impossible? In fact, the vanguard of those 115-point IQ machines is already here. In certain applications, the minds of highly educated MD’s are no longer needed. In 2013, the FDA approved Johnson & Johnson’s Sedasys machine, which delivers propofol to sedate patients without the need for an anesthesiologist. An emerging field in radiology is computer-aided diagnosis (CADx). And a recent study published by the Royal Society showed that computers performed more consistently in identifying radiolucency (the appearance of dark images) than radiologists almost by a factor of ten.

Politicians, economists, and scientists might debate these particular estimates, but to do so is to miss the larger point. Machine intelligence is already having a major effect on the value of work – and for major segments of the population, human value is now being set by the cost of equivalent machine intelligence.

The challenge now is to keep up with 40% to 60% rates of progress … when even a genius like Henry Adams despaired of keeping up with just a 7% rate.
The simplistic policy answer is better training. But at this pace of change, improving the educational system will be perpetually too little and too late. Likewise, artificially boosting the minimum wage will only hasten the reckoning by subsidizing job replacement by intelligent machines. David Brooks has suggested that the government should aggressively build infrastructure, “reduce its generosity to people who are not working but increase its support for people who are,” consider moving to a progressive consumption tax, and “doubling down on human capital, from early education programs to community colleges and beyond.” But even if his program were effectively and aggressively implemented, it might keep up with a 40% rate of progress for only a little while.

Meanwhile, Brooks’s solutions will lead only to bigger government and greater command and control. And it is difficult to imagine how such a sluggish government system could keep up with such a rapid rate of change when it can barely do so now.

Ultimately, we need a new, individualized, cultural, approach to the meaning of work and the purpose of life. Otherwise, people will find a solution – human beings always do – but it may not be the one for which we began this technological revolution.

 

Posted by: Delicana, Flora Mae

Shoe-Wearing Robot’s No Flatfoot — It Walks Like a Person By Mindy Weisberger, Senior Writer | July 15, 2016 07:06am ET

A bipedal robot can now put its best foot forward, stepping with a heel-toe motion that copies human locomotion more closely than flat-footed robot walkers can.

By rocking its “feet” forward from the heel and pushing off at the toe, the DURUS robot closely imitates the walking motion of people, making it more energy-efficient and better at navigating uneven terrain, according to Christian Hubicki, a postdoctoral fellow in robotics at the Georgia Institute of Technology and one of the researchers who helped DURUS find its footing.

Enhanced walking capabilities could help robots navigate environments that people move around in, and could improve the performance of bots created for disaster response, Hubicki told Live Science.

Posted by. Delicana, Flora Mae

MILITARY ROBOTS

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For decades the Marine Corps in Bridgeport, California has taught soldiers how to handle and use mules. Mules have been used in practically every military engagement since the Civil War and most recently in Afghanistan. A mule’s ability to carry equipment and supplies is legendary.

It has the size and agility of a horse but is stronger, has untiring stamina, and requires less food. A mule can carry four hundred pounds (181 kgs) of gear, seven hours a day, for three weeks, through rough terrain. The military refers to mules as a “force multiplier” because they can triple the effectiveness of a troop by reducing the weight carried by soldiers. Less weight means less physical strain and fatigue.

Over the years, the military has relied less on mules and more on Jeeps and Humvees but these vehicles can’t be used in rugged mountainous regions like Afghanistan. Mules are still used in these areas to carry everything from anti-tank rockets and anti-aircraft missiles to body armor, boots and bullets. But mules can get sick and they require trained handlers.

So DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Project Agency) contracted the robotics design company, Boston Dynamics, to develop a military robot to replace the mule. The Legged Squad Support System (LS3) is intended to carry supplies through the same terrain as ground troops – just like mules. The LS3 is capable of interacting with humans and can understand verbal and visual commands. The four-legged robot can lie down, stand up, walk or run.

Sources: http://www.inventor-strategies.com/cool-inventions.html

Robots may seem dangerous not only to cinema action heroes but also to the average manufacturing worker. To assess whether such concerns are well founded, Guy Michaels and Georg Graetz analyse the labour market effects of industrial robots, which have been widely adopted in the past 25 years. Robots’ capacity for autonomous movement and their ability to perform an expanding set of tasks have captured writers’ imaginations for almost a century. Recently, robots have emerged from the pages of science fiction novels into the real world, and discussions of their possible economic effects have become ubiquitous. But a serious problem inhibits these discussions: to date, there has been no systematic empirical analysis of the economic effects that robots are already having. Our research begins to remedy this problem. We have compiled a new dataset spanning 14 industries (mainly manufacturing industries, but also agriculture and utilities) in 17 developed countries (including Australia, European countries, South Korea and the United States). Uniquely, our dataset includes a measure of the industrial robots employed in each industry in each of these countries, and how it has changed between 1993 and 2007. We obtain information on workers’ hours and other economic indicators from the EU KLEMS database.

Source: http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/robots-at-work-the-impact-on-productivity-and-jobs/#Author

  • Edna Mae Buniel

Concerns About the increasing use of robots and their role in the society

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The technologies of the past, by replacing human muscle, increased the value of human effort – and in the process drove rapid economic progress. Those of the future, by substituting for man’s senses and brain, will accelerate that process – but at the risk of creating millions of citizens who are simply unable to contribute economically, and with greater damage to an already declining middle class.

Estimates of general rates of technological progress are always imprecise, but it is fair to say that, in the past, progress came more slowly. Henry Adams, the historian, measured technological progress by the power generated from coal, and estimated that power output doubled every ten years between 1840 and 1900, a compounded rate of progress of about 7% per year. The reality was probably much less. For example, in 1848, the world record for rail speed reached 60 miles per hour. A century later, commercial aircraft could carry passengers at speeds approaching 600 miles per hour, a rate of progress of only about 2% per year.

By contrast, progress today comes rapidly. Consider the numbers for information storage density in computer memory. Between 1960 and 2003, those densities increased by a factor of five million, at times progressing at a rate of 60% per year. At the same time, true to Moore’s Law, semiconductor technology has been progressing at a 40% rate for more than 50 years. These rates of progress are embedded in the creation of intelligent machines, from robots to automobiles to drones, that will soon dominate the global economy – and in the process drive down the value of human labor with astonishing speed.

This is why we will soon be looking at hordes of citizens of zero economic value. Figuring out how to deal with the impacts of this development will be the greatest challenge facing free market economies in this century.

If you doubt the march of worker-replacing technology, look at Foxconn, the world’s largest contract manufacturer. It employs more than one million workers in China. In 2011, the company installed 10,000 robots, called Foxbots. Today, the company is installing them at a rate of 30,000 per year. Each robot costs about $20,000 and is used to perform routine jobs such as spraying, welding, and assembly. On June 26, 2013, Terry Gou, Foxconn’s CEO, told his annual meeting that “We have over one million workers. In the future we will add one million robotic workers.” This means, of course, that the company will avoid hiring those next million human workers.

Just imagine what a Foxbot will soon be able to do if Moore’s Law holds steady and we continue to see performance leaps of 40% per year. Baxter, a $22,000 robot that just got a software upgrade, is being produced in quantities of 500 per year. A few years from now, a much smarter Baxter produced in quantities of 10,000 might cost less than $5,000. At that price, even the lowest-paid workers in the least developed countries might not be able to compete.

To be sure, technological progress has always displaced workers. But it also has created new opportunities for human employment, at an even a faster rate. This time, things may be very different – especially as the Internet of Things takes the human factor out of so many transactions and decisions. The “Second Economy” (the term used by economist Brian Arthur to describe the portion of the economy where computers transact business only with other computers) is upon us. It is, quite simply, the virtual economy, and one of its main byproducts is the replacement of workers with intelligent machines powered by sophisticated code. This booming Second Economy is brimming with optimistic entrepreneurs, and already spawning a new generation of billionaires. In fact, the booming Second Economy will probably drive much of the economic growth in the coming decades.

And here is the even more sobering news: Arthur speculates that in a little more than ten years, 2025, this Second Economy may be as large as the original “first” economywas in 1995 – about $7.6 trillion. If the Second Economy does achieve that rate of growth, it will be replacing the work of approximately 100 million workers. To put that number in perspective, the current total employed civilian labor force today is 146 million. A sizeable fraction of those replaced jobs will be made up by new ones in the Second Economy. But not all of them. Left behind may be as many as 40 million citizens of no economic value in the U.S alone. The dislocations will be profound.

Suppose, today, that the robots and smart machines of the Second Economy are only capable of doing the work of a person of average intelligence – that is, an IQ of 100. Imagine that the technology in those machines continues to improve at the current rate. Suppose further that this rate of technological progress raises the IQ of these machines by 1.5 points per year. By 2025 these machines will have an IQ greater than 90% of the U.S. population. That 15 point increase in IQ over ten years would put another 50 million jobs within reach of smart machines.

Impossible? In fact, the vanguard of those 115-point IQ machines is already here. In certain applications, the minds of highly educated MD’s are no longer needed. In 2013, the FDA approved Johnson & Johnson’s Sedasys machine, which delivers propofol to sedate patients without the need for an anesthesiologist. An emerging field in radiology is computer-aided diagnosis (CADx). And a recent study published by the Royal Society showed that computers performed more consistently in identifying radiolucency (the appearance of dark images) than radiologists almost by afactor of ten.

Politicians, economists, and scientists might debate these particular estimates, but to do so is to miss the larger point. Machine intelligence is already having a major effect on the value of work – and for major segments of the population, human value is now being set by the cost of equivalent machine intelligence.

Source: https://hbr.org/2014/12/what-happens-to-society-when-robots-replace-workers

Posted By: Cristina O. Libuna