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anyone else find this kind of scary?  RSS feed

 
Cassie Langstraat
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Dale Hodgins
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Not me. I enjoy seeing technical innovation. I love those carving machines that can be run over a play dough mock up to make a metal prototype. This puts the small inventor on a more level playing field.

The idea that machines will take over is the realm of science fiction. Industry and agriculture are huge polluters. Technology can be used to solve problems and to repair some of the damage that industry has caused.
 
Cassie Langstraat
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I guess I am not really scared of robots taking over the world, although I'm not saying the thought didn't cross my mind. It's more about the fact that it feels like the idea of factories building themselves sort of takes away the need for any humans. That kind of scares me.
 
Craig Dobbson
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I like this sort of thing because I think it allows people to put more thought into things while at the same time minimizing the actual "tinkering" time, resource wastage and physical space. Being able to 3d print exactly what you need from self derived plans or from plans purchased online, you cut out almost all of the shipping costs and infrastructure. Just think of what CAD did for engineers decades ago. Now add on the fact that you can design AND build in one location with minimal resources wasted. I think this is another great tool that we could find some marvelous novel uses for.

This commercial immediately made me think of what could be done in the realm of things like customized housing, RMH design/shipping and greenhouses. Of course there's the capacity to make "not so nice" stuff too. That's always the other side of the coin. But based on the past I can say that the number of evil doers is actually quite low and we're likely to get more good from this type of tech than bad.

I'd love to have this just so that that I could print a 3D map of my land. How much more easy would it be to design earthworks if you had an accurate scale 3D model of the land you're working with. Pair that machine up with google map's terrain data and you have a serious large scale design tool. Maybe.

What would you build if you could have that machine?
 
Charles Tarnard
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Cassie Langstraat wrote:I guess I am not really scared of robots taking over the world, although I'm not saying the thought didn't cross my mind. It's more about the fact that it feels like the idea of factories building themselves sort of takes away the need for any humans. That kind of scares me.


We barely need humans without that setup. That's why everyone has a crappy service job dealing with your ineffective phone service or updating programming that still works flawlessly. If we had to build all the things we have by hand the labor shortage would be unimaginable.
 
Jay C. White Cloud
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Hi Cassie,

Scared?

Not really part of who I am as a person in general...but I think you have (I am) all good sense to be concerned, wary, and very, very watchful...

(Dale...I promise...I am not picking on you ...your words though just give to much food for thought and perhaps challenge?)


I enjoy seeing technical innovation.


Me too...in context...with a conservative mind controlling the robotic hand...Most of this will be a necessity when (not if) we go into deep space. We will need to make much out of very much of nothing...

This puts the small inventor on a more level playing field.


Absolutely...No doubt and creating exponential growth in today's innovation...but is it all balanced innovation?

The idea that machines will take over is the realm of science fiction.


Is it?

Really?

Little is left of yesterday's....."imagination" and "science fiction" that is not now...SCIENCE REALITY...

I think this quote is complacent...(sorry)...and what leads folks to become "blind" to potential realities they may not have seen coming or underestimated.

Industry and agriculture are huge polluters.


Agreed...and...so is the industries that create most of our technological innovations. There is a price we pay...sometimes worth it?...maybe...yet I do have concerns when "profit" is the engine behind the technology...this is too often the case and ethics are soon "out the window" right along with common sense....Then society loses its healthy levels of uncertainty about what we do...

Technology can be used to solve problems and to repair some of the damage that industry has caused.


I am still waiting for that part of the equation to actually balance on the scales of...What we do in industry and technology actually causing less harm to us and the planet than it actually helps...
 
Dave Burton
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I love the innovation of the 3D printer because it makes rapid prototyping easier, faster, and more accessible to the public. Adding another artistic/permie spin to this innovation, someone figured out how to make a ceramic printer.

Yes, there are many possibilities with the thought that anyone could create anything they wanted with a 3D printer, but I am not going to worry about it because with the law and a basic understanding of common sense, I think most people will opt for doing good with their 3D printers because the benefits of good usually are better than the consequences of doing bad with a 3D printer. Also, I things cost money; that will be a limiting factor to some extent, I think. I like the idea of having a machine that could replace any lost parts or be used to create anything I can imagine. Maybe a part does not even exist in the world, it would allow me to create the parts I need. In a way, I view the 3D printer as an omnitool.

I definitely agree that it puts the small innovator on a more level playing field with the big companies!
 
Cassie Langstraat
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Wow! You all have such positive outlooks in this area! As my aussie friends would say, "good on ya"!

I guess I am the odd one out this time with all my weird paranoia.. Haha
 
Jay C. White Cloud
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You're not odd at all Cassie...I do agree with you...way more than disagree...

I see way too many folks giving up their "actual" ability to create and be creative over to machines. 3D printers are not the "end all and be all" tool so many crack them up to be. I have debated this point numerous times with folks that have "geek skills" but no sense of the artistic eye or even the ability (or desire) to hammer a peg in straight.

I think way too much energy is going into tech without a balance of understanding of the "tech" that came before it...and the skill sets and abilities to use both...
 
Charles Tarnard
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3d printers are great for putting together things with precise measurements, especially in quantity. Amazing, in fact. They are not so good for fitting one off projects with hard to calibrate dimensions together, IMO.
 
Joe Braxton
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The printer or the 2 industrial robotic arms did not build themselves, nor did they design themselves. They have no reason to build and assemble the blocks and are incapable of designing them without a human brain leading the way. Without humans neither would have a reason to exist. These are nothing more than tools, the exact same as a hammer.

I work with automated machine tools and let me assure you they all would grind to a stop within minutes if humans were to disappear (often times with one standing in front of it... ). Anyone who deals with these things on a daily basis quickly comes to understand just how helpless they really are and how unlikely to ever become the threat that science fiction (fear?) portrays..

Do not fear machines........just don't trust them to work correctly.......
 
Cj Sloane
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Dale Hodgins wrote:The idea that machines will take over is the realm of science fiction.


Er, Grey goo anyone?
 
Susan Doyon
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MY son came home tonight and showed me photos of a 3d piece he did this week for class ( he is at Wentworth in Boston studying mechanical engineering )
they are working on 3 d printing multi part working models
the one he was showing me is a rear end for a vehicle in miniature with all working gears and wheels . after printing the medium that holds the moving parts together is dissolved in a chemical bath alowing the parts to be a working model .
I find it fascinating . and wonderfully useful to do mock ups for pre production test fitting . I am thinking for out of production parts say for antique cars or tractors this sounds like a wonderful way to be able to make and test fit a part before making a mold for casting .
 
Jay C. White Cloud
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Hi Susan,

I agree with your observation for good use...For example, in the museum science there is a wonderful place for "some" of this technology...

Cassie's point (and mine) Joe B., et al, is when these machines are (or become) part of a "social matrix" that is independent...not "human dependent" as describe from your work. I can understand when the different 3D printers and robotics are not contiguous...but that is rapidly coming to an end...AND...all of Cassie's "fears" and my very great concerns are manifested. There are currently not many "tech" based "social matrix" in existence ...but they do exist and more are coming online each year. These are complete opposite of Joe's description where the different elements are reaching a rudimentary level of "self awareness" and self actualize there fundamental needs through self audimation...soon many will even collect the resources needed to "self repare." The projected timelines for "closed loop" systems of "A.I. close loop systems" is less than 50 years. Augment this with advancing A.I. and you do have an "Orwellian" potential for risk to the "human condition."

Regards,

j
 
wayne stephen
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The least frightening and most heartening aspect of 3D manufacturing is the decentralization and seemingly infinite potential. There is something very Buckyish about the matter.
 
Cj Sloane
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I do have concerns in this space beyond grey goo scenarios. Anyone who hasn't read Player_Piano_(novel) should check it out.
Player Piano, author Kurt Vonnegut's first novel, was published in 1952. It is a dystopia of automation,[1] describing the dereliction it causes in the quality of life.[1] The story takes place in a near-future society that is almost totally mechanized, eliminating the need for human laborers. This widespread mechanization creates conflict between the wealthy upper class—the engineers and managers who keep society running—and the lower class, whose skills and purpose in society have been replaced by machines.


OTOH, there is the potential to gain some customization that we lost due to the industrial revolution. For example, shoes used to be handmade for each individual, heck each individual's foot! So we lost some comfort having to force our feet into not quite perfect fitting shoes. It would be cool to go back to custom made shoes or whatever, if we can figure out humanity's role in such a world. Food production & land stewardship is probably our role (ie permaculture).
 
Dave Burton
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Delving over the deep end I am, but is the human condition really that important? Is our species the only one that matters? Why does everyone portray the robots as taking over and defeating humanity? Why are they seen as hostile? Why are the robots not seen as friends or compatriots with humans?

The mindset that our species is that only one that matters, I think is what got us into this whole global warming, pollution, toxic gick mess we are in right now. If we approach and view technology as constantly at odds with humanity, I can foresee no good will come of it. It would be a self-fulfilling prophecy. If we look at the universe and world through an interdisciplinary perspective, I think we will come to find that everything could work together and be utilized in a constructive manner if given the right catalysts/facilitators.

Maybe, I think, this general hostility is humanity's fear of having to share the planet with another species of equal or higher capabilities than themselves. Just because we may have invented them, if they become independent, gives us no right to their bodies or minds, I think. I have a similar view on parenting: just because my parents had sex to make me does not give them a right to do anything to my body or mind. I am, yes, at a disadvantage for the first 18 years of my life because that is the nature of humanity; we evolved and conquered the world through our ability to change and collect a huge extragenetic database of knowledge, making our "evolution" independent of human genetic changes. We spend such a long tie in puberty because we must learn and then learn to learn. We are constantly learning which gave us an advantage. We were not waiting for our genes to change our behaviors. For more information on this, I advise reading the "Dragons of Eden" by Carl Sagan; I think it is a wonderful book exploring the development of the human brain and consciousness in comparison to other species. In theory, anyone could have sex which makes the actions of birth and sex themslves rather meaningless. Relaying back over to the main point, so goes for inventions and inventors, I think.

Also, I have a very open and prudent mind, I think. I do not think our definitions of what constitutes life is accurate either. We are biased towards our definition because that is what we are and are used to, I think.

 
Cassie Langstraat
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I absolutely love that response Dave. If robots were to develop autonomy (which in some cases they already are) who is to say that they would want to harm us? It is definitely just an ultimate fear of human extinction that exists in me that caused me to post this video with the title that I did. But you are so right. That is such a anthropocentric fear. There is more than human existence on this planet and if it ends, because of robots taking over or because of lack of necessity, or whatever, the world would keep on spinning..
 
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