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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?

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  • (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.

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  • (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 [] works.

    🌻🌻 []
    • (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.

    🌻🌻 []