End of Death Robot

(Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WuYTfKMveLk)

Read: https://www.cnet.com/news/last-moment-robot-end-of-life-detected/

Chen, an artist, designer, and engineer who just graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design with an MFA in Digital + Media, built the machine as one of a series of functional robots capable of reenacting human social behaviors. But just how much can a machine impart comfort and security?

Therapeutic robots have been used with other populations as well, including autistic children. But the idea of what is, in essence, a robot hospice worker, pushes the conceptual boundaries of human-machine interaction to places some people might not be ready to go. Which is precisely what Chen wants to do.

“The device is meant to raise questions,” he says. “The process of dying is probably the most vulnerable moment of a human life, where one seeks the assurance of human connection. In this installation, human presence is replaced with a robot, questioning the quality of intimacy without humanity.”

(Katz, 2012)

Questions:

  1. What do you think is the “right” way to die?
  2. Would you like to be accompanied by a robot as you die? What about your mobile phone?
  3. People subcontract out many manual jobs – for example, there are domestic servants to do housework, nannies to look after babies, tutors to teach children. Have human beings become disconnected from each other that even death becomes a detached affair?
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Sophia, the First Android Citizen of Saudi Arabia

(Full version source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5t6K9iwcdw)

(Short version source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Rv_H1NKRa8)

http://www.businessinsider.sg/meet-the-first-robot-citizen-sophia-animatronic-humanoid-2017-10/

As of October 25, Sophia is the first robot in history to be a full citizen of a country.

Sophia was developed by Hanson Robotics, led by AI developer David Hanson. It spoke at this year’s Future Investment Initiative, held in the Saudi Arabian capital of Riyadh.

Sophia once said it would “destroy humans,” but this time around the robot spoke about its desire to live peaceably among humans.

Questions:

  1. Should androids/robots be considered citizens of a country? Why or why not?
  2. If a robot becomes a citizen of a country, what changes could result in the society?
  3. What should be the criteria for considering someone to be a citizen?

Apple’s Prediction of the Future in 1987 | Business Insider

(source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=umJsITGzXd0)

http://www.businessinsider.com/apple-future-computer-knowledge-navigator-john-sculley-george-lucas-2017-10/

Set in 2007, the resulting 1987 video followed around an environmental science professor at Berkely juggling everything from preparing a lecture to buying a birthday cake for his father.

To get it all done, he relies on his digital personal butler – the bowtie-wearing, hypothetical grandfather of modern assistants like Siri, Cortana, Alexa, Bixby, and Google Assistant.

During the nearly six-minute vignette, the professor videoconferences with a colleague, researches journal articles on deforestation in the Amazon, and updates his busy schedule, all on one touch screen tablet.

“At the time we came out with it, it was incredibly controversial,” Sculley said. “People said, ‘Well, this is absurd.’”

Questions:

  1. Have all the predictions about the future come true?
  2. Is the future envisioned by your parents’ generation the reality now?
  3. Why are people skeptical of predictions?
  4. Are they right to be skeptical?
  5. What happens if people are not skeptical?
  6. Is it better to be a believer or a doubter (in future possibilities)?
  7. What do you think will happen in the future?

Never too old to code: Meet Japan’s 82-year-old app-maker

Source: https://youtu.be/BXnjNCX6Ai4

https://sg.news.yahoo.com/never-too-old-code-meet-japans-82-old-033639266.html

When 82-year-old Masako Wakamiya first began working she still used an abacus for maths — today she is one of the world’s oldest iPhone app developers, a trailblazer in making smartphones accessible for the elderly.

Frustrated by the lack of interest from the tech industry in engaging older people, she taught herself to code and set about doing it herself.

The over 60s, she insists, need to actively search out new skills to stay nimble.

“As you age, you lose many things: your husband, your job, your hair, your eyesight. The minuses are quite numerous. But when you learn something new, whether it be programming or the piano, it is a plus, it’s motivating,” she says.

“Once you’ve achieved your professional life, you should return to school. In the era of the internet, if you stop learning, it has consequences for your daily life,” Wakamiya explains during an AFP interview at her home near Tokyo.

Wakamiya says her ultimate goal is to come up with “other apps that can entertain older people and help transmit to young people the culture and traditions we old people possess”.

“Most old people have abandoned the idea of learning, but the fact that some are starting (again) is not only good for them but for the country’s economy,” said Wakamiya, who took up the piano at 75.

Hinting that her good health is down to an active mind and busy life, she adds: “I am so busy everyday that I have no time to look for diseases.”

Questions:

  • Why is it important to keep the brain active?
  • What are ways for people to keep their minds active?
  • What are some issues that are faced by older people?
  • Why is it important to engage older people?