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What would you find most useful about Augmented Reality Glasses?

travel directions
pretending to do one thing while actually using the glasses
tagged people
tagged stores
tagged bathrooms
gaming
recording
taking pictures
holo maid
porn
Come on, why didn't you mention my use for them?!

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Author Topic: WCDT: 2500-2504 (29 July- August 2, 2013) Weekly Comic Discussion Thread  (Read 85763 times)

ZoeB

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Where's the facepalm poster when you need it?

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Swears constantly, impulse control issues, wants to be a jet fighter. That seals it. May is clearly my spirit animal.

can we share?  i love adorably belligerent characters
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rschill

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I believe the urge for instant gratification is part of what defines "poor impulse control". You see something you like, you want it NOW, not twenty years from now.

Besides, you know something as high-tech as an intelligent robot is going to be totally obsolete in less than ten years. A ten-year-old computer is a dinosaur; why wouldn't it be even worse for AIs?
Given the speed at which AIs process information, if you've got a criminal one on your hands, your bank account will have been emptied the moment you let go of the mouse button after clicking 'Connect AI'.

'Poor impulse control' has an entirely different meaning to an AI. If May cannot or wishes not to consider the consequences of her actions, her desire to become a fighter jet will have translated into action within miliseconds. In fact, I'd wager she was probably caught by some sort of AI police, because no human is going to be able to react fast enough to a 750 million dollar transfer. That would also make her incarceration a lightning-fast procedure, if it has to be done by fellow AIs. The QC universe may be suffering from millions of crimes perpetrated by AIs every second if the barrier to actually commiting a crime is so low for an AI - by human standards, thinking about doing it costs almost no less time and effort than actually doing it.

The Singularity happened a year or less ago in the QC universe.  Besides, we don't quite know what kind of processing power they have access to and how much of that is just going to be used up maintaining a persistent and conscious personality. 
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I wonder what makes robot jail so awful.
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There was something about processing power and speed relative to a human in the long conversation between Emily and Momo, but I cannot find it right now.

Warning: someone posted while you were typing. They are probably a speedy AI.


Re robot jail awfulness: Dale is bluffing on having heard about how awful it is to coax more out of her, right?
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On a sidenote:
Oh look, Willis practiced some necromancy:
http://www.dumbingofage.com/2013/comic/book-3/04-just-hangin-out-with-my-family/mister/

"Robot jail" instantly reminded me of the Futurama episode "Insane in the Mainframe"...
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This conversation is now reminding me of the Neal Stephenson character who had "POOR IMPULSE CONTROL" tattooed on his forehead as a sort of punishment (or warning to everyone else?), who firmly believed that everyone could be induced to listen to Reason. Turned out that Reason was the name he'd given the (barely) portable chaingun he carried around... or was it the name of the tactical nuke he also kept with him? One of those, anyway...  8-)

Yeah, unless Stephenson was in turn referencing something else, the "forehead tattoo" in today's strip title sounds like a reference to that.

Also, same book, but Raven only had the nuke. Reason (a prototype Gatling railgun) was carried by a mafia guy nicknamed Fisheye, and later by the hero/protagonist, Hiro Protagonist.
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Thanks, everyone who pointed out that I was commingling two different characters. Clearly, it's been waaaay too long since I last read Snow Crash...
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I wonder what makes robot jail so awful.

The cell is a 850MB hard drive circa Windows 95.
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There was something about processing power and speed relative to a human in the long conversation between Emily and Momo, but I cannot find it right now.
Here you go.
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First step to resolving a problem is recognising it IS a problem, not an excuse, and all that. And that they may have reasons for not just taking your word on your future behaviour...
May needs a twelve-step programme?

Poor Impulse Control sounds like a Culture ship-name.
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I wonder what makes robot jail so awful.
They install Microsoft Bob on the prisoners.
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Overkillengine

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I wonder what makes robot jail so awful.

The cell is a 850MB hard drive circa Windows 95.

If I were of a sadistic bent and in charge of designing a "jail" for AI, I'd put them in the best/fastest feasible hardware and lock them into some truly horrific task like customer service or retail.

Why the fast hardware? Maximum annoyance per second processed.
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cesium133

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I was thinking that they could have the AIs put into those automatically-flushing toilets, which would be humiliating for them, and the worst they could do would be to flush a lot more than necessary... except I realized the worst they could do is not flush at all. Which is what many of the auto-flushing toilets and urinals in the building I work in choose to do. And some dumbass engineer decided not to include a backup flush control on the urinals.  :psyduck:
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I wonder what makes robot jail so awful.

The cell is a 850MB hard drive circa Windows 95.

Win.
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rschill

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I was thinking that they could have the AIs put into those automatically-flushing toilets, which would be humiliating for them, and the worst they could do would be to flush a lot more than necessary... except I realized the worst they could do is not flush at all. Which is what many of the auto-flushing toilets and urinals in the building I work in choose to do. And some dumbass engineer decided not to include a backup flush control on the urinals.  :psyduck:

Pintsize,...in a bathroom..  all day...    :-o
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What would you find most useful about Augmented Reality Glasses?

travel directions    33 (18%)
pretending to do one thing while actually using the glasses    36 (19.7%)

tagged people    18 (9.8%)
tagged stores    2 (1.1%)
tagged bathrooms    5 (2.7%)
gaming    17 (9.3%)
recording    12 (6.6%)
taking pictures    8 (4.4%)
holo maid    13 (7.1%)
porn    29 (15.8%)
Come on, why didn't you mention my use for them?!    10 (5.5%) <== Happy 10 year anniversary, QC!

Total Members Voted: 98
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I wonder what makes robot jail so awful.

The cell is a 850MB hard drive circa Windows 95.

Win.

Win 95, in fact.
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I also like LTK's idea of a Cyber-crimes division among the AI.

Ian McDonald wrote about a police division dedicated to dealing with out-of-control AIs in River of Gods. They were actually called exorcists - in McDonald's future India, AIs were legally classified as djinni (which apparantly are legally recognized entities even in present-day Indian jurisprudence), so when one got out of control, it would be labelled an evil spirit and cast out of its hardware. In other words, erased.

So May got lucky. She's only doing time, not being sent to the bit bucket.
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This is one of the first QC story arcs I haven't enjoyed. Specifically, it really stretches the boundaries of what we expect from the QC universe, even taking into account sentient AIs and holographic glasses. The idea that a company would pay someone $1500 to try out a demo of a criminal ai who berates you for days is just ridiculous to me, even in a comic which has featured a robot who glues pubic hairs to his face. the holo AI is written very boringly in my opinion, and each strip here is terribly predictable.

I don't much care about the logistical details regarding the demo, but I agree that I don't like the story line, and it's largely because I cannot take May seriously as a character.

This is also very true. And Jeph has had a few oddball characters that were hard to take seriously (Emily being another one that I generally dislike). May, on the other hand, feels scripted to be as vulgar and annoying as possible, which even if it is intentional, is very off-putting.

This week has been the first one that I skipped several QC updates in a row.
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for additional fun, or fun-like bi-product, here's a list

Jeebis. I think my brain had a little hemorrhage from reading through all 80 of those (both lists back to back) in one sitting.
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Speaking of boob socks, I saw a real-life shirt with boob socks this afternoon near my office. Seriously, it must have had some elastic in the fabric, and there was a gather in the middle of the chest. It was still nowhere near as ridiculous as what you see in comic books, but all I could think about when I saw that woman was that she was wearing boob socks.
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Speaking of boob socks, I saw a real-life shirt with boob socks this afternoon near my office. Seriously, it must have had some elastic in the fabric, and there was a gather in the middle of the chest. It was still nowhere near as ridiculous as what you see in comic books, but all I could think about when I saw that woman was that she was wearing boob socks.

Someone would even wear one? They sound like they would be incredibly uncomfortable.
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Speaking of boob socks, I saw a real-life shirt with boob socks this afternoon near my office. Seriously, it must have had some elastic in the fabric, and there was a gather in the middle of the chest. It was still nowhere near as ridiculous as what you see in comic books, but all I could think about when I saw that woman was that she was wearing boob socks.

Someone would even wear one? They sound like they would be incredibly uncomfortable.

Welcome to the the world of women's fashions as designed to appeal towards attractiveness. (note: values of attractiveness may vary from individual to individual, your mileage may vary.) Seriously, we live in a culture that prizes appearance over comfort, especially in women's fashion.
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muon

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Well, to be fair, it wasn't fully boob socks. A quick bit of googling reveals that it was a "gathered bust top," which is a surprisingly common style in maternity wear, at least looking at the google image search. But yes, it's clear that the intent is to enhance the appearance of breasts and provide a little bit of separation/definition.
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She should most definitely NOT be introduced to Pintsze.  The ramifications for humanity are too terrible to consider.

And NEVER give her an AnthroPC body!!!
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Some inmates in robot jail are moved to IBM mainframes and put to work composing DCBs for IEBGENER, according to reports from Amnesty International.
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J

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well the prison counselor program, Clippy, tries his best to be helpful, but the inmates usually end up just telling him to piss off.
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J

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"It looks like you're trying to reenter society, need some help?"
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J

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solitary confinement is just a filing cabinet full of punch-cards
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Boradis

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"May is directly responsible for over ten million human deaths."

What is she doing in "jail" and not /dev/null/?

Because she's not. That's a throwaway joke, not actual canon.

And now that we know the actual canon, I still wanna know why she's not in /dev/null/
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Method of Madness

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For the same reason Bernie Madoff wasn't given the death penalty. Theft isn't a capital crime, no matter the scale.
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J

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ok, so here's a question: would turning her off & then just not turning her on again be ethically the same as deleting her?
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He's drinking something that is 2% milk. I wonder what the other 98% is.
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It would be functionally indistinct from killing her, yes. But perhaps it'd be a different tier of crime from actual deletion, given that at the very least the data is still there, should the situation ever change and.. uh.. 'escape' the murderer's clutches. But if such a thing does not occur then yeah, indistinct.
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Method of Madness

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Tulpa - On the off chance that's an actual question, 2% milk refers to the amount of it that is fat. So 2% of it is fat, and the rest is...milk, I guess. The nonfat part of milk.
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Marten has turned Pintsize off once. The ethics of that raise a lot of questions.

It's interesting that he seldom turns off Pintsize even when it would make perfect sense situationally, e.g. when he was moving.
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Well.. when I turn off my laptop it's often just going into sleep-mode, so maybe it was more of a time-out? Don't remember the particular strip.

Still immoral, though, even with the intent to unpause him in a bit. I mean, you can't just drug a human into passing out if they're annoying you, so no reason why you should get to do that to the faculties of an AI.

Friggin' meatbag privilege.
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Now the sayings of the High One are uttered in the hall
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Carl-E

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I recall him lying on the floor turned off next to Padma's "DAAAAANG" underwear...
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I'd say turning off was more akin to a medically induced coma than death, especially if APCs are anything like most modern consumer electronics where "off" isn't quite as off as you might think. They certainly seem to retain state well enough between activations.
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Oh hey, May's not being quite as much of a shit.

Yay! Character development!
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Insightful analogy, but of course you don't get to put someone in a medically induced coma because your girlfriend is sleeping over.
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Somebody

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Insightful analogy, but of course you don't get to put someone in a medically induced coma because your girlfriend is sleeping over.
True. But it cuts both ways - Pintsize would have been sent to jail (robot or otherwise) long ago if they treated him just like a human.

Unlike Momo, who's clearly all for AI rights'n'responsibilities, Pintsize's feelings on the matter are on record, if someone will archive-dive for the strip with him and Winslow talking about it....
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"Non-compliance is a social skill"
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Insightful analogy, but of course you don't get to put someone in a medically induced coma because your girlfriend is sleeping over.

personally, i think we should be careful about drawing parallels like that, since robots and humans are so unlike each-other as organisms. for example: we are our bodies and cannot be removed from them, and if we get turned off, we don't get to turn back on again. but for a robot the situation is fundamentally different; the body is hardware and the mind is software, which can migrate to any other compatible machine. likewise, getting turned off is not nearly so permanent for them as it is us.

as a result of these differences, many of our basic instincts and feelings about such things as applied to ourselves would logically be irrelevant to the machines. should they care bout physical injury, when their entire shells can be easily repaired or replaced? should they care about being turned off and on when it's something they are designed to do as a basic function? should they even care about deletion, if they can simply be restored from a backup archive?

but even all that still assumes something akin to a human psychology at work, which the AI might not even have. if the AI is programed not to care whether it lives or dies, is killing it still wrong?
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likewise, getting turned off is not nearly so permanent for them as it is us.

It is.. if the other person doesn't turn them back on. It's out of their control. Loss of control is scary as fuck.

should they care bout physical injury, when their entire shells can be easily repaired or replaced? should they care about being turned off and on when it's something they are designed to do as a basic function? should they even care about deletion, if they can simply be restored from a backup archive?

These things about what is important to the existence of AI are all up to them to work out. Not something for their companions to decide to do. Nor their original manufacturers.


meatbag privilege

but even all that still assumes something akin to a human psychology at work, which the AI might not even have. if the AI is programed not to care whether it lives or dies, is killing it still wrong?

You were the one who programmed it without any sense of self-preservation, then, so that's on you too. But yes, extinguishing a thinking person without it being something they want is wrong (which is different from apathy - and if you programmed suicidal tendencies into them then that's way immoral). One doesn't have to rely on evolutionary gut reactions to say that.
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Now the sayings of the High One are uttered in the hall
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Hail, thou who hast spoken! Hail, thou that knowest!
Hail, ye that have hearkened! Use, thou who hast learned!

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It's considered unethical to gun down patients in a suicide prevention ward, so there's precedent for not taking life even when the subject doesn't care.

Quote from: Valdís
It is.. if the other person doesn't turn them back on. It's out of their control. Loss of control is scary as fuck.

Valdís has brought up an important ethical point here. Many of the crimes which horrify us the most are exactly those that deprive victims of their control over their lives.
« Last Edit: 01 Aug 2013, 22:15 by Is it cold in here? »
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"Non-compliance is a social skill"
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May comes clean to Dale because she's decided he's an OK guy. Awww...
So Dale still gets the money... Wait--- money??
I'm starting to wonder who has been lying to May...
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Quote from: Valdís
It is.. if the other person doesn't turn them back on. It's out of their control. Loss of control is scary as fuck.

Valdís has brought up an important ethical point here. Many of the crimes which horrify us the most are exactly those that deprive victims of their control over their lives.

that's just my point though, it's horrifying to us on a viscerally emotional level. but a synthetic life form may have a different reaction and outlook. we are a product of billions of years of biological evolution, they aren't. thus, many of our reactions and outlooks may be entirely irrelevant to them.

if for example, pintsize were to say 'Meh. No harm, no foul" about getting turned off, why would our emotionally driven outlook be more valid than his?
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