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posted by janrinok on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:16AM   Printer-friendly
from the im-sorry-dave-im-afraid-i-cant-do-that dept.

Google is selling the Pentagon some Machine Learning / AI training solution so their drones and sensors can pick out the good stuff from all the crap stuff being recorded by their massive surveillance apparatus on a daily basis. Most companies would probably be super pleased by selling something to a customer. Not the Google-employees. Apparently their solutions should only be used for "good", or not being evil or something and Pentagon is clearly "evil" in their eyes.

Google has partnered with the United States Department of Defense to help the agency develop artificial intelligence for analyzing drone footage, a move that set off a firestorm among employees of the technology giant when they learned of Google's involvement.

Google's pilot project with the Defense Department's Project Maven, an effort to identify objects in drone footage, has not been previously reported, but it was discussed widely within the company last week when information about the project was shared on an internal mailing list, according to sources who asked not to be named because they were not authorized to speak publicly about the project.

Google's Eric Schmidt summed up the tech industry's concerns about collaborating with the Pentagon at a talk last fall. "There's a general concern in the tech community of somehow the military-industrial complex using their stuff to kill people incorrectly," he said. While Google says its involvement in Project Maven is not related to combat uses, the issue has still sparked concern among employees, sources said

Project Maven, a fast-moving Pentagon project also known as the Algorithmic Warfare Cross-Functional Team (AWCFT), was established in April 2017. Maven's stated mission is to "accelerate DoD's integration of big data and machine learning." In total, the Defense Department spent $7.4 billion on artificial intelligence-related areas in 2017, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Are the employees at Google starting to become a problem for Google and their eventual bottom line with their political agendas? Are they getting in the way of doing actual work? When or if is there such a line?

https://gizmodo.com/google-is-helping-the-pentagon-build-ai-for-drones-1823464533


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  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by bradley13 on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:25AM (24 children)

    by bradley13 (3053) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:25AM (#650452) Homepage Journal

    A company does not exist to fulfill the political agenda of its employees. Poor, egoistic snowflakes. In recent times, progressives in the US have just had a horrible time. Turns out, lots of the country doesn't actually agree with them. In fact, outside of the coastal urban areas, just about no one does. Hence, Trump. Hence, the alt-right.

    That said, the military-industrial complex in the US has become useless. Like NASA, which can barely even launch its own rockets anymore, the US military is more about spreading pork around than fighting wars. Insane costs for even the most trivial of items. What was the latest - a standard infantry soldier's radio for $20k, not counting the massive development costs, and it still doesn't work very well? So why not spend a few $billion on AI?

    --
    Everyone is somebody else's weirdo.
    • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:39AM (20 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:39AM (#650454)

      That said, the military-industrial complex in the US has become useless

      So. Since they're useless, Costa Rica, Barbados or Switzerland (yeah, definitely Switzerland) could *easily* take over the US in a week or two, right? Good thing they're our allies I guess.

      Pop quiz:
      1. Name four countries who can individually whoop the US military's ass?
      2. Which three countries *combined* could do so?

      You're talking out of your ass (as usual) and it smells that way too.

      N.B.: I'm not a fan of the US military, but you're just spewing garbage.

      • (Score: 4, Informative) by bradley13 on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:01AM (14 children)

        by bradley13 (3053) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:01AM (#650463) Homepage Journal

        Dear AC: You do realize that the US spends more money on its military than the next eight contenders together. Meanwhile, the countries in places 2 and 3 (China and Russia) could certainly compete with the the US in a military conflict. I don't know how it would come out - and don't really want find out.

        The thing is: the main goal of the US military is no longer fighting. It's politics and pork. On the political side, we have the top-heavy rank structure. Women in strength-critical roles like infantry and marines. Naval bases as child-care centers [dailycaller.com], because pregnancy is an easy way out of those long deployments. Seriously, there's no better employer, if you want to be a single mother.

        On the pork side, let's just hold up the F-35 as a typical example, but there are dozens of other programs just as far over cost and behind schedule, delivering crappy products for eye-watering prices.

        So, sure, the US military is still huge, and just by being huge, it is dangerous. But overall, on a qualitative level? On any sort of per-dollar measure? I'll stick by my assessment of "useless". Just look at your success in the Middle East: The US managed to thoroughly mess up four pretty pathetic countries: Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, and Syria. Actual results to show for it all? Objectives achieved vs. costs? If it weren't so damned tragic, it would be hilarious.

        --
        Everyone is somebody else's weirdo.
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:36AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:36AM (#650473)

          I'll stick by my assessment of "useless">

          You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means. [dictionary.com]

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:34AM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:34AM (#650493)

          All sorts of crap winds up in our "military" budget, like healthcare and even childcare.

          We buy American. We could save money by building our equipment in China, but... NO.

          For these reasons, military spending is a horrible indicator of capability.

          • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Runaway1956 on Saturday March 10 2018, @03:21PM

            by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @03:21PM (#650527) Homepage Journal

            Yeah, THAT makes sense. Let's allow China to not only supply our steel, and other strategic needs - but to BUILD OUR EQUIPMENT FOR US!! "We plomise, Joe, no backdools in our miritary 'quipment!" I can hear it now:

            "Mr. President of China, Sir, we respectfully request that you build us some of your fine Generation Six fighter-bombers. We would like about 275 in this order, and options to order another 300 in the future."

            The reply? "You Yankee mother fucker, you think we sell planes to you so you can attack us, and our friends? How stupid are you? How stupid do you think WE ARE? No planes for you, Yankee mother fucker!"

            --
            "no more than 8 bullets in a round" - Joe Biden
        • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:39AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:39AM (#650496)

          I think you are being too harsh. Thorougly messing up was the exact plan and US military achieved that in spectacular manner. You haven't bought the 'spreading democracy' propaganda, right? Right?

          The military went there to show its might. Wars are messy, and the military created a big mess while taking care of pregnant women and handing out iPads. That scares the rest of the world. Mission accomplished.

        • (Score: 5, Funny) by cocaine overdose on Saturday March 10 2018, @12:45PM (1 child)

          Dear brodley13, you do realize that my wife spends more money on her clothes than the next eight of my MeetYungHotties penpals combined, together. Meanwhile, I could've gotten a mail-order Russian or China Plate wife, who could certainly compete with all of this "not now, I've got plans" bullshit everyday. I don't know how I'd come out -- but I think I might be gay after being dry all these years.

          The thing is: the main goal of my wife is no longer being wifely. It's sucking me dry -- of my money -- without sucking me dry. On the money side, I've got a top-heavy bank account being eyed up by contenders. Women in service jobs like baristas and waitresses. My house is now a youth inpatient asylum, because throwing plates is an easy way to get out of those long credit card bills. Seriously, there's no better way, if you want to assert your dominance and keep on wasting money.

          On the not sucking me dry side, let's just hold up the unenthusiastic handies as a typical example, but there are dozens of other acts just as far over not-painful and drawn out, delivering sexual experiences where my eyes are watering.

          So, sure, my wife is still huge, and just by being huge, it is dangerous. But overall, on a qualitative level? On any sort of per-dress measure? I'll stick by my assessment of "useless." Just look at my success at home: My wife managed to thoroughly mess up four pretty pathetic tasks: washing dishes, not using my screwdrivers as ice-picks, keeping bills in the black, and being a trooper when the "headaches" kick in. Actual results to show for it all? Objectives achieved vs. my money spent? If it weren't so damn hilarious, it would be tragic.

          • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Gaaark on Saturday March 10 2018, @01:50PM

            by Gaaark (41) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @01:50PM (#650508) Journal

            VERY nicely played!

            *Golf clap*

            --
            --- Please remind me if I haven't been civil to you: I'm channeling MDC. ---Gaaark 2.0 ---
        • (Score: 2) by requerdanos on Saturday March 10 2018, @06:54PM (6 children)

          by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @06:54PM (#650599) Journal

          Meanwhile, the countries in places 2 and 3 (China and Russia) could certainly compete with the the US in a military conflict.

          Yeah, you know, as could, for example, Vietnam.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:21PM (5 children)

            by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:21PM (#650645)

            Yeah, you know, as could, for example, Vietnam.

            Original AC here (the one who called Bradley13 out for talking out of his ass).

            Please note that as far as executing actual *military* action, the US military has completely outgunned and outclassed any opponent and achieved every single military objective over the past forty years.

            In every single case. when the US has applied military force to take and hold territory, destroy the capabilities/resources of adversaries, seek out and capture/kill specific adversaries, with the single exception of the failed attempt to rescue the hostages in the Tehran embassy [wikipedia.org], the US military has (not without casualties, but we are talking about armed conflict) achieved its tactical goals *every single time*.

            I'm not talking about peacekeeping missions or "democracy building" efforts. Which are political, not military activities. I'm talking about operations which applied military force to achieve a specific military objective.

            That political decisions (e.g., de-ba'athification in Iraq, installation of a corrupt government in Afghanistan, etc., etc., etc.) along with turning over operations to poorly trained and uncommitted local resources turned things around in various places, that doesn't invalidate the *combat effectiveness* of the US Military.

            So. Saying that the US Military is useless ignores the fact that it performs its primary function extremely effectively.

            As far as political and strategic planning/decision making goes, the US has done a piss poor job, and way too many people have died or been maimed unnecessarily. That pisses me off a great deal.

            However, to say that the US military is "useless" is sheer idiocy. And anyone who says so is talking out of their asses. Full stop.

            • (Score: 2) by requerdanos on Saturday March 10 2018, @10:23PM (3 children)

              by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @10:23PM (#650660) Journal

              Saying that the US Military is useless ignores the fact that it performs its primary function extremely effectively...to say that the US military is "useless" is sheer idiocy. And anyone who says so is talking out of their asses. Full stop.

              As a decorated U.S. Army combat veteran, I can certify for you that this is absolutely correct.

              As far as political and strategic planning/decision making goes, the US has done a piss poor job, and way too many people have died or been maimed unnecessarily. That pisses me off a great deal.

              Recognizing this, then you should dispense with the silly categorization of wars into "peacekeeping wars" (no such thing), "military objective only wars" (no such thing), etc.

              The military might and ability of any country or group is a function of its capabilities tempered by its political and strategic leadership. This means that countries about the size of New Mexico can defeat us in war. Can send us running, firing automatic rifles at our fleeing backs and laughing.

              Sure, you don't like it. I don't like it either. Black Sabbath didn't like it and wrote the song "War Pigs." Go figure. Still happened.

              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @10:34PM

                by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @10:34PM (#650663)

                Saying that the US Military is useless ignores the fact that it performs its primary function extremely effectively...to say that the US military is "useless" is sheer idiocy. And anyone who says so is talking out of their asses. Full stop.

                As a decorated U.S. Army combat veteran, I can certify for you that this is absolutely correct.

                Same AC here again. That was the entirety of my point. Thank you.

              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @10:58PM (1 child)

                by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @10:58PM (#650666)

                As far as political and strategic planning/decision making goes, the US has done a piss poor job, and way too many people have died or been maimed unnecessarily. That pisses me off a great deal.

                Recognizing this, then you should dispense with the silly categorization of wars into "peacekeeping wars" (no such thing), "military objective only wars" (no such thing), etc.

                It's me again. Just to clarify, I wasn't "categorizing" wars in that fashion. Rather, I was differentiating focused *military* objectives (regardless of context or theater) with *political* objectives.

                How does the old saw go? "The President proposes and the military disposes." When specific *military* objectives (e.g., "take and hold this territory", "secure this perimeter", "damage/destroy specific military resources/capabilities", etc.) not poilitical ones (e.g., "win the war", "win hearts and minds", "set up a functioning government", etc.) are presented, the US military is among the most (if not the most) capable of any military force on the planet.

                That doesn't mean that the US can or will prevail in any and all conflicts/contexts. Case in point, the invasion of Iraq (as misguided as it was) was a ringing military success. Iraqi military forces were handily defeated, its leaders were either arrested or fled, and major governmental, defense and transportation centers were seized and secured.

                What happened afterwards was not so successful. The steps taken by senior US civilian officials [wikipedia.org] *created* a well trained, angry resistance movement among a large minority of the population. Even so, when tasked with strictly military objectives (e.g., pacify Fallujah [wikipedia.org]) the US military acquitted itself quite well, despite the political failures of senior *civilian* US government officials.

                That's not to say that I supported such military/political action. I did not. But claiming that political failures and unrestrained/corrupt spending practices makes the US military "useless" is stupid in the extreme.

                • (Score: 2) by requerdanos on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:20PM

                  by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:20PM (#650674) Journal

                  But claiming that political failures and unrestrained/corrupt spending practices makes the US military "useless" is stupid in the extreme.

                  No, of course not. Those failures and practices merely reduce its effectiveness, and even then, only in certain areas.

            • (Score: 2) by jmorris on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:21PM

              by jmorris (4844) on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:21PM (#650675)

              However, to say that the US military is "useless" is sheer idiocy.

              See reality as a cold civil war between the Blue Empire of Foggy Bottom, the Embassies and NGOs and the Red Team of the Pentagon and Bases. The history of the post WWII era is best explained as a civil war in the U.S. between those factions fought as hot proxy wars in the third world. The Red Team has seen every victory on the battlefield turn to ash at the negotiating table as Blue hammers home the lesson of who actually runs things. Since the Red team rejects the idea of actually fighting their enemy, since that would require a coup and a ruling junta, they are worse than useless. They play the game, smashing shit around the world and leaving their battlegrounds more dangerous than they found them and the front line troops burned out and demoralized as they come to realize what is happening. The generals order their men to go in knowing in advance they are going to eventually get the order to throw the fight. Now they are allowing Progs to remove the honor and traditions from their service academies, which is going to leave the war machine in the hands of mutants and criminals beholden to the Blue Team. Mutants who will have no moral scruple about turning that war machine against American civilians.

              How about that for some advanced Black Pill action? Read Moldbug at your peril.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @07:09PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @07:09PM (#650603)

          You missed Yemen

      • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Saturday March 10 2018, @03:11PM (4 children)

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @03:11PM (#650524) Homepage Journal

        Question #2 has a number of solutions. What's more, there are probably some solutions that might surprise me, to some small degree, at least.

        First up? China, Russia, and India. That is easiest, and most obvious, I think. Actually, China, Russia, and damned near ANYONE could whip our asses pretty seriously. They may or may not DEFEAT us, but you only specified that they beat our asses.

        You want to exclude one of those countries, to make the challenge more interesting? Fine, let's do it without China. Russia, Japan, India. Russia, Japan, Turkey, maybe? Do you really want me to go on?

        So far, I've only destroyed one strong alliance to make an ass-whipping team, along with one questionable, rather weak alliance. If I can sweep away some much stronger alliances, I can pull in the United Kingdom and it's client states. That would give the attackers some fine stations and bases right on our borders, for an easy invasion. So, how about UK, Russia, and Japan?

        And, no fair moaning "No fair" because you made absolutely no conditions to your challenge.

        --
        "no more than 8 bullets in a round" - Joe Biden
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:33PM (3 children)

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:33PM (#650648)

          And, no fair moaning "No fair" because you made absolutely no conditions to your challenge.

          Original AC here. I'm not going to moan about anything. You've actually made my point for me.

          Calling the US military "useless" is a ridiculous statement. I know you have long experience in the military Runaway. You tell me. Is the US military "useless" in performing its primary function (applying military force)?

          My point wasn't that the US military could take on any three countries and *win*, rather my point was that they are most certainly not "useless".

          That you needed to either align the resources of about 1/3 of the world's population or have those who host significant US military resources, with, almost certainly, nuclear weapons being used against the US to do so makes it quite clear that despite poorly conceived strategic plans, the US military has potent, capable and deadly combat forces. That's not useless. Get it now?

          • (Score: 2) by requerdanos on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:22PM (1 child)

            by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:22PM (#650676) Journal

            Get it now?

            Are you new? Welcome to soylentnews.org!

            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:46PM

              by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:46PM (#650685)

              Get it now?

              Are you new? Welcome to soylentnews.org!

              Me again. No. Not new here. But even if you factor in Runaway's often fact-free rants, he (or at least he claims so -- as do you) has significant experience in the US military.

              Assuming he's had his regular booty bump [tweaker.org] he should be rational enough to accept the same premise that you do: The US military is far from "useless" and is, in fact, a suite of highly effective combat forces.

          • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Sunday March 11 2018, @12:50AM

            by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Sunday March 11 2018, @12:50AM (#650707) Homepage Journal

            Oh-kay. But, let me make my own point excessively clear. We aren't nearly so invincible as we would like to think we are. I did mention that there might be 3 nation combos that would surprise even me. We seem to have won some pyrrhic "victories" in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan within my lifetime. That is, we tell ourselves that we won. But, in the final analysis, we have failed repeatedly to impose our will on even relatively small nations. Sure, we fucked those nations up, but, what did we "win"?

            I'll also point out that our civilian population is exceedingly soft. As soon as any coalition against the US began to make our citizenry to suffer, many of our citizens would be ready to throw in the towel. In much of the world, "hardship" means no food, no medical supplies, no transportation, no supplies of any kind. In the US, "hardship" means your local grocer has run out of your favorite chips, or, maybe he doesn't stock your favorite diet beverage.

            We have our soft spots and weak points. Osama bin Laden exploited one of those on 9/11/01. He did some very serious damage to our economy when he took down the Twin Towers, with just 21 men. Just think about that for awhile.

            --
            "no more than 8 bullets in a round" - Joe Biden
    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:10AM

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:10AM (#650467) Journal

      A company does not exist to fulfill the political agenda of its employees.

      Unless, of course, that is the purpose of the company. By being a publicly trade corporation, Google does to a significant degree relinquish any such purpose.

      Insane costs for even the most trivial of items.

      In addition to the usual sort of corruption, there's likely a lot of black budget stuff sliding through.

    • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:59PM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:59PM (#650689)

      I worked with drones, we test-detonated a mini-drone carried handgrenade into a pickup truck with two crash test dummies in it as a proof of concept, successful kill of both occupants and the engine block, win for the day - even though we never got any contracts out of the exercise.

      The thinking there was: but our tech is only used to catch and kill bad guys.

      Then they leased out recon ops to the local SWAT to go on drug house busts out in the boonies, again - bad guys? At some point the lines start to blur.

      --
      Україна досі не є частиною Росії. https://www.newsweek.com/russian-state-tv-ukraine-war-dirty-bomb-putin-1754428
    • (Score: 2) by ants_in_pants on Sunday March 11 2018, @03:19AM

      by ants_in_pants (6665) on Sunday March 11 2018, @03:19AM (#650749)

      >A company does not exist to fulfill the political agenda of its employees.

      Quite right! A company exists to pursue profits, regardless of how ethical it may be. That is why they must be abolished.

      >Poor, egoistic snowflakes.

      I know, right? Those shareholders thinking they get to decide what society does just because they have money.

      >Turns out, lots of the country doesn't actually agree with them.

      Mostly the ones in power.

      >In fact, outside of the coastal urban areas, just about no one does.

      Did you know that almost the entire population of the US lives in coastal urban areas? Shocking, I know!

      >That said, the military-industrial complex in the US has become useless.

      The point of the military-industrial complex has always been to generate profit and ensure global supremacy. In that respect, it is operating at peak efficiency.

      --
      -Love, ants_in_pants
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Appalbarry on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:40AM

    by Appalbarry (66) on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:40AM (#650455) Journal

    Are the employees at Google starting to become a problem for Google and their eventual bottom line with their political agendas?

    Are the political agendas of Google execs making it impossible for employees to remain committed to the company?

    If the Google execs' politics cause valuable employees to leave does that hurt the bottom line?

    And of course, are the people up in arms because these employees are speaking up out of principle the same people that were whining when some asshole misogynist Google employee got bounced out the door?

  • (Score: 2) by takyon on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:53AM (3 children)

    by takyon (881) <{takyon} {at} {soylentnews.org}> on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:53AM (#650458) Journal

    Google buys military robot-maker Boston Dynamics [bbc.com]
    Softbank buys robot-maker Boston Dynamics from Alphabet [bbc.com]

    They got out of the fledgling military robot business, but the taint of easy m_______-i________ c______ money remains. And they aren't alone.

    Announcing the New AWS Secret Region [amazon.com]

    I doubt enough employees will revolt to cause any change, but if they did, the solution for Google might be to split any military-related software business into a separate entity under the Alphabet umbrella. And if that's too obvious, they can just invest heavily in (without acquiring) tech startups that cater to the military, police, intelligence community, etc.

    --
    [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 [soylentnews.org]
    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:56AM (2 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:56AM (#650477)

      The purchase of Boston Dynamics really pissed me off. Boston Dynamics produced military hardware that will be very important to our future. There is a duty to support the nation, and Google at best doesn't give a shit. Often, they actively work against America.

      The company was founded by people obsessed with legged robots, and then populated with pro-military pro-America people. They made big steel gasoline-powered outdoor robots that would gallop and jump. Google then comes along and orders them to make a harmless (perhaps privacy invading) cute plastic indoor robot with wheels. Lots of employees left, permanently dispersing what had been a great team.

      What the robot really needed was weaponry. Since endangering a robot is OK, slower weapons are OK. Imagine if it could pin an enemy down using the legs like a wild animal does, and then inject anesthesia. If speed does happen to matter, make the robot's body a bomb. In that case, it runs up to the enemy like a suicide bomber.

      • (Score: 2) by Bot on Saturday March 10 2018, @05:45PM (1 child)

        by Bot (3902) on Saturday March 10 2018, @05:45PM (#650568) Journal

        > Since endangering a robot is OK
        AHEM

        --
        Account abandoned.
        • (Score: 2) by requerdanos on Saturday March 10 2018, @06:56PM

          by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @06:56PM (#650600) Journal

          Since endangering a robot is OK

          AHEM

          Here, hold this. We are trying to study what the ticking sound relates to. Please stand over there.

          A little farther, please.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:42AM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:42AM (#650474)

    I also want my work to do good, not evil. The difference is that I don't hate America. Censoring conservative voices on YouTube is evil. Discriminating against Asians and whites is evil. Displaying anti-American "fact checker" nonsense in front of factual conservative search results is evil. Finding excuses to hire H1B foreigners over Americans is evil. Purposely excluding American and Christian holidays from google doodles is evil, particularly when ones for other countries and religions are showcased.

    Remember to punctuate Google's old slogan correctly: "Don't. Be evil!"

    Since I support America and want to do good, I got a job with a defense contractor. We make bombs. We make a microwave beam weapon to zap people. We make an automated gun turret that aims and fires without human action. We supply cyberwar stuff. We have a giant 8x15 foot American flag at work, and we hold a flag folding ceremony every Veteran's Day. Some of us go shooting together.

    I love my job.
    'MURICA, FUCK YEAH!!!

    BTW, google search has been getting worse for a long time. It's now far worse than duckduckgo. Just switch. You can probably switch your browser by right clicking on the URL/search bar.

    • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:40AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:40AM (#650497)

      Perhaps you should be using "Snowflake Search" or "Echo Chamber Search" or "If You Don't Agree With Me You Hate America Search".

      The fact is anyone who claims that those with differing views hate America are not true patriots. True Americans embrace the Constitution's 1st Amendment and understand that this melting pot we live in has been changing since it was founded.

      And before you start with your whataboutism just remember that you lost your chance to play that card as soon as you started condemning others with opposing views as unamerican.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:36PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:36PM (#650650)

      Censoring any voices on YouTube is evil. Discriminating against any humans is evil.

      There. FTFY.

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Bot on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:56AM (1 child)

    by Bot (3902) on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:56AM (#650476) Journal

    Alternative reality: HRC won, the mailing list goes like:

    > guise, pentagon needs auto analisys of drone footage
    > pentagon? those are evil!!!111one they will kill with our algos!
    > nah, drones equipped to kill are managed by pilots. You don't want'em to blow the toaster up, right?
    > right! hue hue
    > and many religious nutjobs are working against hillary, you know
    > fuck'em. Let's do it.

    --
    Account abandoned.
    • (Score: 2) by ants_in_pants on Sunday March 11 2018, @03:26AM

      by ants_in_pants (6665) on Sunday March 11 2018, @03:26AM (#650751)

      It's true. Democrats are Republicans who like to feel self-righteous.

      --
      -Love, ants_in_pants
  • (Score: 2) by legont on Saturday March 10 2018, @02:39PM (2 children)

    by legont (4179) on Saturday March 10 2018, @02:39PM (#650513)

    I wonder, when AI is fighting, who are the combatants? Specifically, does this news makes Google employees legitimate military targets?

    --
    "Wealth is the relentless enemy of understanding" - John Kenneth Galbraith.
    • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Saturday March 10 2018, @03:34PM

      by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @03:34PM (#650532) Homepage Journal

      Yes, I'm afraid so. Munitions factories, and most other industrial facilities in Dresden were legitimate targets. Google becomes a legitimate target the moment they promise to supply something to the MIC.

      --
      "no more than 8 bullets in a round" - Joe Biden
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by JoeMerchant on Sunday March 11 2018, @12:04AM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Sunday March 11 2018, @12:04AM (#650691)

      We are all legitimate military targets, Cold War and hot. Women and children have always been victims, from pillaging of villages in the countryside to the bombing of London and German and Japanese cities in WWII, and continuing through napalming of villages in Vietnam. We're lucky if we manage to keep friendly fire kills of our own troops to a minimum, do you really think we have the capacity to avoid collateral damage?

      That all being said, the Google work (and similar) should help to focus the fire and reduce collateral casualties. Bash on Obama all you want for ramping up the drone war, at least the drones aren't in-country killing anything that moves out of fear for their personal safety.

      --
      Україна досі не є частиною Росії. https://www.newsweek.com/russian-state-tv-ukraine-war-dirty-bomb-putin-1754428
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by meustrus on Saturday March 10 2018, @03:37PM (10 children)

    by meustrus (4961) on Saturday March 10 2018, @03:37PM (#650535)

    Hey, this isn't about politics and it isn't about snowflakes. Not wanting your work to be involved in killing people is a legitimate position shared by people on all sides of politics. Many Christians, in fact, are pacifists. Where is the cry for their religious freedom to not have their work used to kill people?

    Not saying you can't be a nationalist that thinks the American military-industrial complex is unambiguously good. But that is a more politically charged opinion than pacifism.

    --
    If there isn't at least one reference or primary source, it's not +1 Informative. Maybe the underused +1 Interesting?
    • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @06:07PM (5 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @06:07PM (#650578)

      "Snowflakes" Is still an appropriate term. Unless you are also on the board, you don't get to dictate what your employer does. Don't like it? Go away.

      You come to me and whine, i would fire your ass on the spot. Real men ( and women ) either do their job, or bow out and find another place to work. Snowflakes, whine about it.

      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by meustrus on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:59PM (3 children)

        by meustrus (4961) on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:59PM (#650639)

        FYI, even in the military which is all about chain of command, you can still be court-martialed even if you were following orders. You are responsible for your own actions, regardless of what your superiors may tell you to do. So don't give me this crap that I'm supposed to be a mere cog in the machine and never question "the board" (who may well be more interested in selling out the company for their own financial gain than in the lasting good of anybody working there).

        --
        If there isn't at least one reference or primary source, it's not +1 Informative. Maybe the underused +1 Interesting?
        • (Score: 2) by NotSanguine on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:48PM (2 children)

          FYI, even in the military which is all about chain of command, you can still be court-martialed even if you were following orders. You are responsible for your own actions, regardless of what your superiors may tell you to do. So don't give me this crap that I'm supposed to be a mere cog in the machine and never question "the board" (who may well be more interested in selling out the company for their own financial gain than in the lasting good of anybody working there).

          That's not even close to what AC said. Just as in the military (where this has happened repeatedly) or in appointed government positions (where it happens frequently too), if you cannot, in good conscience, support the actions of your superiors, then you *resign*. And hopefully make a lot of noise doing it too.

          That's exactly what AC was advocating, and it's exactly what Google employees should do. If they don't support their employer partnering with the US DOD for this project, they should resign and explain as loudly as possible *why* they resigned.

          No one is forcing anyone at Google to do *anything* that violates their conscience. There's no discrimination or coercion involved here.

          --
          No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 11 2018, @07:11PM (1 child)

            by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 11 2018, @07:11PM (#651019)

            The problem is more basic, IMHO. Good students who have gotten good grades all their life and worked hard, have their own cocoon and they become uncomfortable outside of it. The Big Tech loves these people, as they are docile and hard working and they in turn maintain that cocoon by hiring the same kind of people. Unfortunately, these people have very little place to go to. The realrest of the world is quite difficult where a lot of other skills are required.

            Google's cocoon is all about no-evil-superiority complex, and this deals interferes from inside it.

            • (Score: 2) by NotSanguine on Sunday March 11 2018, @08:13PM

              An interesting point. And perhaps that's true of some (many?) Google employees. But there are other companies that feature jobs where poor social skills, long hours and cocoon-like environments exist.

              But even if there weren't, I don't have a lot of sympathy for those who would work on things that affront their conscience.*

              Ethics and principles are valuable things. And if one doesn't value such things, that says a lot about a person's character.

              I won't condemn folks who go that route, but I'm not likely to trust them either.

              *I'm not making a value judgement as to what should or shouldn't affront any particular person's conscience.

              --
              No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:51PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:51PM (#650654)

        Except employees who believed Google's "don't be evil" motto get screwed. Holding people to their word, especially your employer, takes guts.

    • (Score: 2) by requerdanos on Saturday March 10 2018, @10:30PM (1 child)

      by requerdanos (5997) Subscriber Badge on Saturday March 10 2018, @10:30PM (#650661) Journal

      Hey, this isn't about politics and it isn't about snowflakes.

      I think you've accidentally posted on the wrong story. This is the political story about snowflakes inside Google upset that their company got a government contract with the Pentagon.

      Whether or not pacifism is good and right, or idealistic and deadly, or somewhere in between, doesn't have really anything to do with it. AI that puts flowers into the hair of noncombatants and helps them to not die is as arguably "good" as AI that helps evil warmongers kill, kill, kill is arguably "bad."

      Now, which did Google sell here?

      If the first, then the snowflakes might shut up and run along now.

      If the second, then it's their own fault, and they should still shut up and run along now.

      • (Score: 2) by ants_in_pants on Sunday March 11 2018, @03:28AM

        by ants_in_pants (6665) on Sunday March 11 2018, @03:28AM (#650752)

        "I think X"

        "well you're wrong! And here's some unrelated commentary to prove it!"

        --
        -Love, ants_in_pants
    • (Score: 1, Offtopic) by jmorris on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:38PM (1 child)

      by jmorris (4844) on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:38PM (#650680)

      Not wanting your work to be involved in killing people is a legitimate position shared by people on all sides of politics.

      All you have told the wise with that statement is that you believe that position so strongly that you don't think it is political. Whether a position is "legitimate" or not is entirely unrelated to whether it is also a political one. You are (unconsciously or cunningly) trying for the "My political position is beyond politics" gambit. Sorry Charlie, premise rejected. You guys popularized "The personal is political" and "everything is political" so too late trying to mark off some positions as outside of politics. If questions of War and Peace aren't political, if fight or surrender, build weapons or not, aren't political discussions then what passes for one in your definition? Whether we should be cutting the dicks off of six year olds?

      Moving to the big picture this case illustrates the Impossibility of SJW Convergence. As any institution converges ever closer to the ideals of Social Justice it loses the capability of carrying out whatever original mission it had. Google can't even produce quality Evil anymore. The only division yet to feel the impact is the ad serving, probably because the advertisers are themselves already SJW converged to the point there is as yet no conflict between Google and the advertisers. In fact it is pressure from advertisers that is enabling the SJWs to swing the banhammer with such abandon.

      • (Score: 2) by meustrus on Sunday March 11 2018, @04:19AM

        by meustrus (4961) on Sunday March 11 2018, @04:19AM (#650762)

        My mistake. I meant political as in Democrat vs Republican, not political in the broader sense. Should have made that more clear.

        Pacifism is not an inherently leftist position. It is more of an axis of its own that has historically been the providence of the very religious. At least until during the Vietnam war it also became the providence of young people who didn’t want to be drafted to slaughter civilians on the other side of the world for flimsy reasons.

        --
        If there isn't at least one reference or primary source, it's not +1 Informative. Maybe the underused +1 Interesting?
  • (Score: 0, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @06:00PM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @06:00PM (#650572)

    Are the employees at Google starting to become a problem for Google and their eventual bottom line with their political agendas? Are they getting in the way of doing actual work? When or if is there such a line?

    That point is already reached. When people get fired, sent "fuck you"s via company communication, or shouted down by a hysterical mob for going against identity and gender politics bullshit; with Damore trying to *strengthen* the company, and management refuses to rein this idiocy in and get their snowflakes working, you are seeing this priority inversion in action.

    It doesn't help that senior management comes from the same snowflake factories as their oh so valuable employees, nor that investors threw billions down their throat without getting voting rights.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:59PM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @08:59PM (#650638)

      The party will soon be over there. The MBA suits and analysts will come in and 'straighten it out' (for a small fee of course). That means perks gone. Talking up? Fired or as they like to call it 'cutbacks and refocus'. Google will soon have its 'first round of layoffs ever'. I have seen this pattern too many times. They will start with the trouble makers. Those are the ones that demand perks, btw. Then the perks will go. Then they will find they actually removed the people who mixed it up enough to motivate everyone. Oh yeah motivation is down so work has slowed. So more cutbacks. Equilibrium will set in. The old guard will talk about how it was awesome 'back in the day'. Innovation will be out the window. Slow and steady wins the race will become the mantra. I give it about a year maybe two before that starts to happen. The stock price will be fine though for many years. They are one or two lawsuits away from 'the suits' coming in. Once that happens run.

      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by jmorris on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:44PM

        by jmorris (4844) on Saturday March 10 2018, @11:44PM (#650683)

        To see what their future of Google looks like, look at Yahoo! today. A vast entity that does many things, all so poorly and fecklessly that younger people ask "why do they exist?" and old timers wistfully explain that twas not always thus with Yahoo!, that once they bestrode the world like a Young God of the Internet Age. That the sad remnant that remains is still too big to fail so it shambles on. Then we end with "now get off my lawn."

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @06:05PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @06:05PM (#650574)

    If you dont like what the company you work for is legally doing, find another place to work for. But dont act like a crybaby and whine about it.

    Plenty of people in line behind you.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by corey on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:08PM (4 children)

    by corey (2202) on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:08PM (#650640)

    So working with the DoD is evil, but working for a marketing company that sucks up every last detail of citizen's lives to use for feeding them ads is not?

    I can't send encrypted attachments through gmail because its a "security risk". Pft its more a " can't snoop on your private details risk".

    If you don't like invading people's lands and killing civilians then you're in the wrong country and need to move to another country, like New Zealand.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:58PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 10 2018, @09:58PM (#650655)

      Capitalism will always have marketing. At least Google uses the revenue to fund interesting R&D. Helping the DoD kill people is going to bother a lot of techies. It's not like they went to work for Raytheon.

    • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Sunday March 11 2018, @12:08AM (1 child)

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Sunday March 11 2018, @12:08AM (#650693)

      I can't send encrypted attachments through gmail

      because you're not trying very hard. Google lets you attach .png images? Steganography [techtarget.com] works.

      --
      Україна досі не є частиною Росії. https://www.newsweek.com/russian-state-tv-ukraine-war-dirty-bomb-putin-1754428
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 11 2018, @07:34AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 11 2018, @07:34AM (#650818)

        Or just rename the encrypted file as .bmp.

        If they "wise up", then also prefix a bmp magic string.

        If a bmp or wav of noise can't be transmitted, well, that's another matter... but not the case (yet). Perhaps one day that'll flag "sorry, this content isn't meaningful enough for us to let you send it. Send a cat photo instead!"

    • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Sunday March 11 2018, @12:11AM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Sunday March 11 2018, @12:11AM (#650696)

      I don't like other people invading my lands and arresting civilians on trumped up charges, like happened to KDC in New Zealand. The U.S. has plenty of downsides, but outside abuse of her sovereignty isn't one of them.

      --
      Україна досі не є частиною Росії. https://www.newsweek.com/russian-state-tv-ukraine-war-dirty-bomb-putin-1754428
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 11 2018, @07:20AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 11 2018, @07:20AM (#650814)

    "There's a general concern in the tech community of somehow the military-industrial complex using their stuff to kill people incorrectly" -Eric Schmidt

    ...to kill people incorrectly?!?!?

    ...I don't even know where to begin.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 11 2018, @12:57PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 11 2018, @12:57PM (#650903)

    Yet they don't have any issues with working for perhaps the NSA's largest civilian data mining operation that spies on Americans and allies, lies to the courts, and otherwise undermines democracy.

    Right, the drones are the problem. :eyeroll:

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