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posted by martyb on Saturday June 05, @10:49PM   Printer-friendly
from the kill-all-humans dept.

Killer Drone 'Hunted Down A Human Target' Without Being Told To:

After a United Nations commission to block killer robots was shut down in 2018, a new report from the international body now says the Terminator-like drones are now here.

[...] The March 2020 attack was in Libya and perpetrated by a Kargu-2 quadcopter drone produced by Turkish military tech company STM "during a conflict between Libyan government forces and a breakaway military faction led by Khalifa Haftar, commander of the Libyan National Army," the Star reports, adding: "The Kargu-2 is fitted with an explosive charge and the drone can be directed at a target in a kamikaze attack, detonating on impact."

[...] "The lethal autonomous weapons systems were programmed to attack targets without requiring data connectivity between the operator and the munition: in effect, a true 'fire, forget and find' capability" – suggesting the drones attacked on their own.

[...] In August of last year, Human Rights Watch warned of the need for legislation against "killer robots" while NYC mayoral candidate Andrew Yang has called for a global ban on them – something the US and Russia are against.

See also: New Scientist magazine and the Star.


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  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Runaway1956 on Sunday June 06, @01:07AM (11 children)

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Sunday June 06, @01:07AM (#1142212) Homepage Journal

    That bit is a lie. We automate all sorts of things, already, like our thermostats. The thermostats don't do anything without being told to. We don't have a running conversation with our thermostats every day, to keep our workspaces and our homes comfortable. We tell them once what we want, and forget about them.

    The drones are more sophisticated than a thermostat by several orders of magnitude, but someone told the drone they wanted a target eliminated. The drone obeyed. The moral responsibility lies with the person or persons who told the drone who to kill.

    The sweet thing about a drone? You can just tell it to kill anyone wearing a keffiyeh of a certain pattern. Or a tartan, or digitally camoflaged uniforms, or robes of a certain style. Or, you can tell it to kill anyone whose skin color falls within certain parameters, or anyone with red hair and freckles. The drone won't question you, it's just going to search for people who match whatever you programmed. This ain't skynet, or Transformers and Decepticons, with the computers making their own real decisions yet.

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  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by takyon on Sunday June 06, @01:19AM (5 children)

    by takyon (881) <takyonNO@SPAMsoylentnews.org> on Sunday June 06, @01:19AM (#1142214) Journal

    Maybe we'll see enough of these deployed to have a random bit flip trigger the kill bystander sequence.

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    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by EvilSS on Sunday June 06, @02:10AM (1 child)

      by EvilSS (1456) Subscriber Badge on Sunday June 06, @02:10AM (#1142223)
      No need for that. These things are basically a pipe bomb integrated into a quad copter. Anyone close enough to be considered a bystander is going to have a bad time even if it's 100% on target.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @11:30AM (2 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @11:30AM (#1142331)

      There are no innocent bystanders, just accomplices. Do keep up with the narrative, will you?

      • (Score: 2, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @02:50PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @02:50PM (#1142370)

        and witnesses.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 07, @03:22AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 07, @03:22AM (#1142621)

          Those are extremist ideologues, blinded to reality by the lack of money in front of their eyes!

  • (Score: 2) by coolgopher on Sunday June 06, @04:10AM (1 child)

    by coolgopher (1157) Subscriber Badge on Sunday June 06, @04:10AM (#1142247)

    As someone who's in the software/firmware field professionally, the idea of letting software near weaponry scares the hell out of me.

    The only thing that scares me more is letting humans near weaponry. I still have the vain hope that our software models will evolve to be fitter than the people who kicked them off.

    • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @09:59AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @09:59AM (#1142316)

      Don't worry, they're using Rust so it's impossible to have any software errors.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @08:00AM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @08:00AM (#1142294)

    For some reason, we were never able to automate Navy Supply Clerks, like the QAnon Shaman or Runaway1956. Is it the case, that certain levels of stupidity are not able to be captured by algorithms, and so have to be left to the less intelligent organic units? Thank you for your "service", Runaway1979!

    • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @09:51AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @09:51AM (#1142314)