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Current state of Automation

Discussion in 'Robotics & Mechatronics' started by neptune, Feb 2, 2012.

  1. Sceadwian

    Sceadwian Banned

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    Apparently you have no concept of how far away from the goals we actually are. I'm more than willing to leave the future for future generations. But if you think AI and automation has reached anything even a fraction of what the video hints at you're deluding yourself.

    Reality is far more complicated, and this complexity is irreducible.
     
  2. neptune

    neptune Member

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    who cares if we cant build AIs which are equal in intelligence of humans. even if we reach half of the human intelligence then it would be more then enough to start a another level of civilisation.
     
  3. panic mode

    panic mode Well-Known Member

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    while automation has already made hundreds of jobs lost to a machine, this only replaced jobs of those with inferior skills and they are not the ones that make the difference.

    if the same happened to humans on the other side of skill spectrum, the brain power could be used to do research or ponder clever and more advanced systems.
    instead, we have army of couch potatoes that can use computer to get to their favourite social network site, order pizza and navigate tv channels.
    they can't and won't do anything more than machine that replaced them does.
     
  4. dave

    Dave New Member

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  5. Mr RB

    Mr RB Well-Known Member

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    Those "ecology-of-man" quotes look a bit crackpot to me. In some animals it is evident that overpopulation leads to self destruction, but man has always been self destructive. Even given small populations surrounded by abundant high quality food (Pacific islands) there was still tribal warfare and man's "self destruction". And other examples of cultures with high populations but peaceful organised society. It's a non-sequitur bigoted view that high human populations must be "self destructive".

    Of course that quote sounds resonable at first glance, but the "long range" capacity of resources depends on technology. Technology brings solar-powered desalinisation so seawater becomes drinking water and fertile farmland. Modern hydroponics grow many many times the size of food crop from a small area of land. Modern housing can fit more people into less land, leaving more land availble for resources.

    This is outright bigoted crackpottery. This planet can support many times its current population, even with the present day level of technology, IF resources are *managed well*. And the future brings greater improvements in technology which increases the number of population that can be supported. As a simple factual example I live within some miles of a massive river which every day dumps literally gigalitres of beautiful fresh water straight out to sea. Crackpots can say there is "a shortage of drinking water", well there isn't it is just managed very badly. Like the food. Like the farmland, like the housing and transport.

    The planet is NOT overpopulated it is just very poorly managed.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2012
  6. Sceadwian

    Sceadwian Banned

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    Mr RB, what about psychologically? The strains placed on the human mind in the last hundred years as far as the numbers of people, methods, and technology we use to communicate, and how being 'social' has changed have increased to the point where that in a well developed country there are more people in instantaneous contact with any individual at any given time, than even existed on the entire planet 200 years ago, and it's not getting any bigger, and our methods of properly dealing with even a few hundred people are crude at best.
     
  7. Mr RB

    Mr RB Well-Known Member

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    It's a valid point, but is that really an issue? With well managed housing how many people are you forced to see or interact with? Some people now live in cities but rarely see anyone else. Some people live in the country and would see many people per day. There will always be options and choices for the individual (including relocating) regardless of the total population of the planet.

    I was mainly adressing that emotional knee-jerk concept; "the planet is already too overpopulated" which i believe is simply untrue. If you take people out of the equation and use an analogy, you can have a badly managed wardrobe "too full" of junk piled in. But you could also manage the space much better with modern technology, things like stackable drawers etc and comfortably fit many times the amount of items in the wardrobe and with a more pleasant overall interaction. :)
     
  8. Sceadwian

    Sceadwian Banned

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    Mr RB, what does it matter if it's practically impossible to institute the changes required?
     
  9. neptune

    neptune Member

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    So you think we humans should keep on increasing our population.
    Why dont you make your location public , it will give me a good idea about you
     
  10. Mr RB

    Mr RB Well-Known Member

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    Scaedwian, why "practically impossible?". It's practically impossible to put 2 men on the moon! But building a desalination plant or a hydroponics greenhouse is very practical and very possible.

    Is it practical for a bank or insurance company to make a billion dollar a year profit from shuffling numbers, when there are people starving? Maybe there is also money to be made in feeding people? :) My point is to generalise that as humanity in general (as a whole), we are poor at managing resources, or have deliberately managed resources to provide enormous luxury for a few when millions are hungry. I'm not a communist, quite the opposite, because I believe there will be great wealth to be made from helping undeveloped countries to develop. It's all a matter of management.

    Neptune, I have never hidden my location I have been a forum member for many years and it is common knowlege that I am in Australia. :)
     
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  11. neptune

    neptune Member

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    The way i see it is if we make a chip or neural network that understands human speach or a chip that learns to recognise objects and find its way in a room, then half of the work is done .. it will easily take over the pity jobs which majority of humans, who are also not doing anything advance.
    we dont want critical thinking robots, cause 80% of humans do not have critical thinking. neither it is necessary for some jobs
     
  12. Sceadwian

    Sceadwian Banned

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    This is not true at all, putting men on the moon as been done, it has been practiced, it is by definition practical, and could be repeated.

    What the entire human race could do if we all bent our will in the same direction is irrelevant if it can't be done in practice. The point I attempted to make is that it is completely impossible to get that many individuals to act for a common goal. We are now and forever will be until some great calamity wipes out a large portion of the population, a 'mass' of human beings, no people are involved. There are parties and division involved, politics and religion at it's best.

    So we went to the moon... The moon is not world peace...

    Approaching world peace can't be taken the same way other technical problems can because it has nothing to do with technical details it has to do with people and people's minds and how individuals react as a group which are nothing like individuals do in systems so complex most people are fooled by common tricks to believe things which do not exist.

    Let me know when they make one... The best speach recognition systems still screw up an order of magnitude more than a human being does at least. Same with finding it's way in a room.

    All human beings think critically, just about different things.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2012
  13. Mr RB

    Mr RB Well-Known Member

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    Sorry I think we had a communication error. When you said "practically impossible" I assumed you were using the typical meaning of the phrase, that something is very, very difficult but not impossible. Either way if you meant "literally impossible" to describe the changes then I think that is wrong.

    There is nothing literally impossible about managing food, water and land resources better. We are getting better at it all the time. Technology is constantly improving, which synergistically makes it easier causing an exponential improvement. It was only 250 years ago when farming was done by a man guiding a beast pulling a little wooden plough. Now we have high tech fertilisers and massive combine harvesters, and each acre produces many times more food.

    I get your point and agree that the whole world won't be fixed instantly just because some dreamer snapped their fingers.

    But I was not talking about the whole world being instantly fixed! I was talking about a specific premise from NSAspook's link, that "the planet has too many people". The planet can hold a lot more people, and the people can have better access to food and water, it is all a management issue. Not an overpopulation issue.

    And I see nothing literally impossible or practically impossible about the fact that we are starting to become better managers, and the fact that resources will become better managed as time progresses.
     
  14. Sceadwian

    Sceadwian Banned

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    Last time I checked functional manipulation of the masses was not something serious scientists were looking into for the benefit of mankind.. and as long as we leave it up to the people that will exploit every opportunity for self benefit that presents itself (politicians) it will be impossible to reach the goal of truly better management. Many politicians start out with altruistic goals and then 'get into the game' and disappear forever in the sludge of psychological games to affirm perceived power in order to achieve goals which dissolve in the attempt to achieve them.

    Theoretically possible doesn't mean practical. In theory yes man's finite resources could easily be managed so that we all had food clothing and shelter even if population increases well beyond it's current value, but only in theory, works great on paper figure out how to make it work in the real world.

    As far as time factors go you better hope we get better a LOT faster than our population is growing. All it would take right now to decimate as far as us humans go this planet is a badly placed disaster that wasn't foreseeable. We're treading a razor's edge and when I mean practically possible I'm not talking the lifespan of you or I or anyone at all, but thousands to tens of thousands of years in the future, that is the kind of stability the human race requires right now, and we're no where even near to having a clue how to achieve it.
     
  15. neptune

    neptune Member

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    if you say this again i will pounce upon you. i HATE population !!:mad:
     
  16. neptune

    neptune Member

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    I dont understand what do you want , if you can make it clear what is your Aim for humanity , how to achieve it and other pros and cons.
    we all know many problems faced by us but can you provide a solution
     
  17. Mr RB

    Mr RB Well-Known Member

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    OK, this is your thread and my discussion of NSAspook's quote was all a bit off topic anyway, sorry for that! :)

    But I would like to ask you a question, if you "hate population" then why the desire to see automated worker robots? The concepts you have discussed would bring about a situation where the worker robots would be taking jobs from your overpopulated community. That would mean greater unemployment and local poverty. I would have thought you would prefer to see more people emplyed and able to support their families?

    To Scaedwian, you made some very valid points and I don't really disagree with anything in your last post. Except maybe for the "doom and gloom" scenario, but I put that down to me being an optimist. In general I think that people are good, and people get better. And as far as unforseen disasters go, I also believe we are in a massively better situation now for dealing with unforseen disasters, than say we were in the past (like a couple of hundred years ago). Technology has brought better prediction systems, better/faster communication systems and better systems for fast transport of people and supplies in event of an emergency.
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2012
  18. neptune

    neptune Member

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    The core reasons why humans have more then 2 babys is.
    1. self gratification .. showing ones verility
    2. Economic - more childrens means more money, safe gaurd against monetary failure
    3. Health - if disease is rampant in society and more humans die before reproducing then one need to have more children to propogate his genes succesfully
    4. Cultural - if you live in tribal area or in culture where family unit is very strong and only identity of a person then one needs to have big family to have respect in that community
    and so on ..

    so mechanisation of society will cancel economic point i need not explain this , Health can be improved by intervention of govt. , Culture will also nullify when most of the decision making will not include help of other humans so, big family will mean nothing ..
    verility thing is personality dependent , i have no clue how to change it :rolleyes:
     
  19. Mr RB

    Mr RB Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for that answer, you make some very good points.

    Are there a lot of large families where you are? In my local area is is typical to have only 1,2, or 3 children. Someone with 4 children would be rare.
     
  20. Sceadwian

    Sceadwian Banned

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    Mr RB, I had one good argument that should elegantly show why population, or more specifically as I think neptune intends that population growth is the actual problem.

    Look at the attached graph, and then very simply work out the rough approximation of the exponent required to create that curve..

    Project it out 2.5 million years... The biomass would be well more than the mass of the earth, if not larger, I'd love someone to work the math out =)

    Something will break. The doom and gloom scenario has to happen, there is no logical way the current growth rates can be allowed. Controlling them will be up to mother nature through means which will not be pretty and they are going to occur unless some method can be worked out within the next few hundred/thousand years to institute a global method of human population control.

    Good luck with figuring out how to get people to go along with that!

    Trust me, my doom and gloom scenarios are probably the kinder of what will actually happen. When the bow breaks in reality (as it invariably will) it will be something more than likely out of our personal comprehension. Look at the graphs of population growth at exponential rates and the extinction events that follow. They ALWAYS occur. There's no immediacy to it though in a human life span so people don't fear it. By the time the population fears this the events will already have come to the point where there is no way to do anything about it, outside of solutions that would now be considered morally incomprehensible. Sometimes the needs of the many outweight the needs of the few, but under these circumstance, there will eventually be portions of society with low population and a lot of power to control population (kill) and large masses of people that have no power. Choices will be made unless stability can be reached before then.

    The next 200-1000 years are going to be the make or break for the human races modern long term survive-ability and there's not one current shred of hope that anything is or will in the future be done about this inherent system instability problems.

    I think we're at what near 6 billion people? Once it hits 8 or 10 you'll see countries going into sheer panic, by then if methods immediately able to put this into place then the human race is doomed to be just another race of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lemming, only we'll have no where to go.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2012
  21. Mr RB

    Mr RB Well-Known Member

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    I understand the exponential effect, but that would only occur given unlimited resources and room to expand (which is an agreement with you of course, as you correctly stated there is not unlimited room to expand nor unlimited resources on one planet).

    Where I disagree with you is your premise that population will just grow out of control until a "disaster" occurs. This sounds again like bad management. What makes you think as population doubles, quadruples etc and starts to approach the limits of the planet (which is likely to be much higher than 24 billion by my reckoning) that there would be no well-managed systems to gently curb the population growth?

    I agree that over the next 1000 years we will be needing (and have needed) to manage population and resources much better. I just don't agree in the "doom and gloom" scenario that we are completely incompetent to manage anything. I'm sure in your own home you manage the population and resources well enough and there is no overcrowding and starvation. Likewise I'm sure your local council handles the housing and food distribution well enough for your local area. So if you can manage resources and your local council can do likewise, where is this belief coming from that nobody elsewhere in the world could ever learn to do the same?
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2012

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