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posted by chromas on Sunday August 16 2020, @01:02AM   Printer-friendly
from the cloudscale-big-brother dept.

The Panopticon Is Already Here (archive)

Xi Jinping is using artificial intelligence to enhance his government's totalitarian control—and he's exporting this technology to regimes around the globe.

[...] Xi has said that he wants China, by year's end, to be competitive with the world's AI leaders, a benchmark the country has arguably already reached. And he wants China to achieve AI supremacy by 2030.

Xi's pronouncements on AI have a sinister edge. Artificial intelligence has applications in nearly every human domain, from the instant translation of spoken language to early viral-outbreak detection. But Xi also wants to use AI's awesome analytical powers to push China to the cutting edge of surveillance. He wants to build an all-seeing digital system of social control, patrolled by precog algorithms that identify potential dissenters in real time.

[...] China already has hundreds of millions of surveillance cameras in place. Xi's government hopes to soon achieve full video coverage of key public areas. Much of the footage collected by China's cameras is parsed by algorithms for security threats of one kind or another. In the near future, every person who enters a public space could be identified, instantly, by AI matching them to an ocean of personal data, including their every text communication, and their body's one-of-a-kind protein-construction schema. In time, algorithms will be able to string together data points from a broad range of sources—travel records, friends and associates, reading habits, purchases—to predict political resistance before it happens. China's government could soon achieve an unprecedented political stranglehold on more than 1 billion people.

Early in the coronavirus outbreak, China's citizens were subjected to a form of risk scoring. An algorithm assigned people a color code—green, yellow, or red—that determined their ability to take transit or enter buildings in China's megacities. In a sophisticated digital system of social control, codes like these could be used to score a person's perceived political pliancy as well.

A crude version of such a system is already in operation in China's northwestern territory of Xinjiang, where more than 1 million Muslim Uighurs have been imprisoned, the largest internment of an ethnic-religious minority since the fall of the Third Reich. Once Xi perfects this system in Xinjiang, no technological limitations will prevent him from extending AI surveillance across China. He could also export it beyond the country's borders, entrenching the power of a whole generation of autocrats.

See also: In the Age of AI

Related: Is Ethical A.I. Even Possible?
China Now Has AI-Powered Judges
The US, Like China, Has About One Surveillance Camera for Every Four People, Says Report


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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 16 2020, @11:33AM (3 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 16 2020, @11:33AM (#1037429)

    The "it's not real communism" argument again. Why that fat, psychopathic pedophile Mao was just a regular capitalist wasn't he?

    In socialism, the workers own the means of production.

    When? Was that what lead to the need for Lenin's market reforms? Do you ever think the reason you clowns keep trotting out the "not real communism" argument is simply because socialism hasn't ever worked? Mussolini created the template for centrally planned states that do need to produce wealth but Marxists deny that too because it reveals their ideology to be so inherently flawed it should rightfully be considered evil.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 16 2020, @02:34PM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 16 2020, @02:34PM (#1037472)

    I think you'll find we're having the "it's not real capitalism" argument.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 16 2020, @03:09PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 16 2020, @03:09PM (#1037488)

      I think you'll find you misunderstand the Chinese economy. [city-journal.org]

  • (Score: 2) by maxwell demon on Monday August 17 2020, @08:27AM

    by maxwell demon (1608) Subscriber Badge on Monday August 17 2020, @08:27AM (#1037763) Journal

    Why that fat, psychopathic pedophile Mao was just a regular capitalist wasn't he?

    If you think the modern Chinese economic system even remotely resembles the system Mao once installed, you must have been living under a rock for quite some time.

    --
    The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.