Sunday, December 31, 2017

Emerging Technological Threats In 2017

Bulletin Of The Atomic Scientists: Neuro, cyber, slaughter: Emerging technological threats in 2017

Nuclear weapons have threatened humanity for more than 70 years. Anthropogenic climate change, though largely unrecognized until recent decades, had its beginnings in the 19th century. Wouldn’t it be nice if advances in technology stopped throwing new problems at the world? No such luck. Several emerging technological threats could—soon enough—come to rival nuclear weapons and climate change in their potential to upend (or eliminate) civilization.

In 2017, the cyber threat began to seem very serious and real. Experts in artificial intelligence pounded an ominous drumbeat about decision-making weapons and bloodless machines with superbrains. Researchers in biotechnology reported that advances in their field could lead to the deliberate, efficient spread of disease, among a host of mind-boggling dangers. Such thoughts aren’t very cheery this holiday season. But when it comes to treating emerging threats as seriously as their more established cousins, no time beats the present. The Bulletin’s work is to reveal where danger lurks and illuminate paths to safety. In 2017, the articles listed below cast a powerful light.

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WNU Editor: The development of “Slaughterbots” is one of those under-reported stories that the above post fortunately examines.

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