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I'll explain more at the end, but let me set up this clip in five words:
robot killers, Stephen Fry,
watch
Autonomous weapons have been described as the third revolution in warfare
after gunpowder and nuclear bombs.
They could mount rapid devastating attacks on a huge scale.
Thousands of experts including Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking have signed an open letter calling for a ban on the weapons.
They say drones that can autonomously find and eliminate people meeting certain criteria
are feasible within years, not decades
But calls for a ban have been rejected by the world's 10 largest military powers
and Musk has warned that international competition for AI superiority
is the most likely cause of World War 3
So, do we have a recipe for disaster?
Let's start with the current situation
During Obama's presidency the number of American troops in war zones dropped by around 90 percent
But there were ten times more drone strikes
Russia has multiple unmanned drone tanks in development
and completely autonomous armed vehicles guarding missile bases
America plans to enable its Abrams tanks to control robotic wingman vehicles
to attack the enemy while protecting the manned tank
It is also considering a remote-controlled version of the high speed ripsaw vehicle
Air power is already used with relative impunity
And soon the fighters will use AI to control drone wingmen able to carry weapons
test air defenses and keep human pilots even further from danger
Around the world
anti-ballistic missile defenses and drones are diminishing nuclear deterrence
This is the US Navy's new unmanned ship designed to hunt submarines and launch surface weapons
It will cost around 20 thousand dollars per day to operate
compared to 700 thousand dollars per day for a manned destroyer
In a simulation test with the Air Force Research Lab AI drones repeatedly defeated a human pilot
Former Air Force battle manager Jean Lee tried and failed to hit the drones
and was destroyed by them every time
He said they seemed to be aware of his intention
and reacted instantly to his movements and attacks
Autonomous weapons would be cheap to mass-produce
and may become available to terrorists and dictators on the black market
A recent report by the US defense Science Board called for immediate action to accelerate military AI development
and understand the capabilities of other powers
It also noted that commercial drones are rapidly improving
and private AI firms are well ahead of the military
Some argue AI will reduce accidental casualties by making fewer mistakes
If a soldier believes someone is a threat
their life depends on making a quick decision
A robot on the other hand could react a fraction of a second before it's fired on or even wait until it's attacked
But the weapons could also be extremely effective at assassinations, subduing populations
and selectively killing particular ethnic groups
The second revolution in warfare brought the world close to World War 3 with the Cuban Missile Crisis
The third revolution may be even more volatile
We also need to plan for an even greater threat from AI itself
Many experts believe it will surpass human intelligence in the next few decades
It may then assume full control of the world's networked weapons
Would it use them for peacekeeping?
Or for bringing humanity to a quick end?
Whether or not humans retain control and AI arms race may be a race to Armageddon
We believe a ban that's difficult to enforce is better than a world flooded
with cheap anonymous autonomous weapons
What do you think?
So I hope you enjoyed that clip or were frightened by it
Let me know what you thought in the comments below
That clip was actually made by friends of mine who run a YouTube channel called Pindex
They make incredibly high quality educational videos
If you want to check them out, I will put a link in the description and one up here
Now, you know whenever I see those Boston Dynamics videos come out
I'm always simultaneously amazed
at the achievements that they've been able to produce
and simultaneously scared that I'm watching the birth of the ancestors of our future robot overlords
So, yeah, I've got mixed feelings about this
but I think it's a really important topic and that's why I wanted to share this clip with you
And I also wanted to highlight the fine work of the guys over at Pindex, so yeah, definitely check them out
and for those of you who are asking
Derrick what about your videos? Why haven't you been posting very much lately?
Well, I have been working on some stuff
In fact, I've got a full-length 90-minute documentary coming out in the summer of this year
It'll be available globally
so watch out for that. I will be giving you some updates closer to the day
And I also have a pilot for a brand new series
that I worked on with minutephysics and MinuteEarth, I will put a link in the description
And if you're in the U.S., you can go check it out. Other places are geo-blocked
You know I can't
say anything for that
but it's our intention to try to get this series out to as many people around the world as we possibly can
So if you can check it out, go and do that now and I will be posting some more videos soon
I promise and hopefully it will
explain why I've been absent for some of this time, so yeah. I hope you enjoyed that clip