The blackbox in your car

May 24, 2011 by Katie Gatto weblog

(PhysOrg.com) -- It is expected that within the next month officials at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will declare that all cars must have an event data recorder inside the vehicle.

The boxes, which are already used in planes are more commonly know by the name "black box", and are designed to record the condition of a vehicle and show us the last few seconds of the car before the crash. The device, which the driver would not be able to turn off, would be able to be used by law enforcement, and to gather more crash data.

There are some concerns about the use of the data, and the potential overreach of government authority, but this may not stop the mandate from going through. If you have an in your car then the odds are that you already have one of these devices in your car, but the information that you will get about the device will probably come completely from the legal disclosure in your owner’s manual.

This new mandate may conflict with the laws of some states that prohibit the disclosure of this particular type of data. Though, the odds are that you do not live in one of those states that has these data protection laws. There are 37 states with no laws that bar the disclosure of this type of data. Currently, there are no federal laws that explicitly govern the access to this black box data, or any laws that clarify how much of this driving data other parties, such as your insurance company, can legally access.

Explore further: Researchers create global road maps showing potential economic and ecological consequences of new roads

More information:
via Wired

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TheGhostofOtto1923
2.1 / 5 (20) May 24, 2011
THIS is a good idea. Also speeding cameras which reduce the need for cops to chase speeders down and risk lives doing so.

Anything which reduces the opportunity for cheaters and their slick lawyers to lie in court because they think it is their right to cheat, is a good thing.

You break natural laws, you pay the appropriate price, you learn a lesson. This is how evolution works. Why shouldnt manmade laws act the same way?

I look forward to the day when all crime will be impossible.
Mikeal
4 / 5 (6) May 24, 2011
I will state this one last time for the spectators. Permit the cars to self-drive, like google cars in Arizona and then black boxes will not be required. The money saved in law enforcement reduction would be considerable for state budgets. Drivers could also stop paying insurance! That is a clean $2k saved per year per driver.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.8 / 5 (15) May 24, 2011
I will state this one last time for the spectators. Permit the cars to self-drive, like google cars in Arizona and then black boxes will not be required. The money saved in law enforcement reduction would be considerable for state budgets. Drivers could also stop paying insurance! That is a clean $2k saved per year per driver.
Black boxes or telemetry will still be needed to monitor and improve performance. As will insurance as glitches and defects will still cause accidents.

But I think machines should be able to pay their own insurance. I think the machines which replace workers and jobs should be paid for the work they do, and thus pay taxes to compensate for all the revenue lost. This could mean cars could pay for themselves and 'partners' who drive them may not actually own them. Sort of like a lease I suppose.

This would mainly be a way to offset the effects of a shrinking workforce, and could just be a matter of paperwork. No they wouldnt need to vote.
Doug_Huffman
2.6 / 5 (11) May 24, 2011
Insurance? Collide with a g00gle-car and find out who pays, it ain't gonna be g00gle. The ONLY reason for these BB is to implement the mileage tax.

Here's another great reason to keep my 8 year old 50+ mpg VW TDI diesel. They ain't makin'em better or cheaper or smarter. The Ringgold, GA tornado did $9K damage to my $3K car and I'm paying for the repairs. Scroo Big Sis!
ShotmanMaslo
2.3 / 5 (6) May 24, 2011
I think the machines which replace workers and jobs should be paid for the work they do, and thus pay taxes to compensate for all the revenue lost.


That does not even make sense. There is no lost revenue, what a machine earns goes to the owner, and the owner pays the tax from it. Machines are not human, there is no need to pay money to them, lol.
jmcanoy1860
4 / 5 (9) May 24, 2011
This will eventually go through for the simple reason that insurance companies stand to make money and they are VERY willing to buy politicians. I personally think this kind of government invasion is unconstitutional but since when have politicians let that stop them. It fits in with the iPhone, Google, and Facebook watching your every move. I'm surprised I still have internet acce....
freethinking
3.1 / 5 (17) May 24, 2011
I have no problem with black boxes in Cars. I have problems allowing insurance companies and especially govern
ment access to that information. The more information government has, the more power it has. The more power it has, the more dangerous it becomes.
dogbert
3.4 / 5 (17) May 24, 2011
Such information gathering constitutes "unreasonable search and seizure".

Of course, violations of the constitution do not bother today's government.
ab3a
3.6 / 5 (9) May 24, 2011
1. It is not seizure if the insurance company pays for the vehicle.

2. Shouldn't we want bad drivers to have to pay a price for their incompetence behind the wheel?

3. With black box data collection it will be possible to gather better performance data on safety devices in the real world.

So why is this a bad idea?
dogbert
2.5 / 5 (17) May 24, 2011
1. It is not seizure if the insurance company pays for the vehicle.


Of course it is. Monetary considerations do not trump constitutional protections.

2. Shouldn't we want bad drivers to have to pay a price for their incompetence behind the wheel?


We have multiple laws dealing with driving -- licensure, insurance requirements, fines & penalties and incarceration.

3. With black box data collection it will be possible to gather better performance data on safety devices in the real world.


Really? Are we incapable of examining the vehicle and the passengers for damage?

So why is this a bad idea?


a) It violates the 4th amendment protection against unreasonable search and seizure.
b) It is a prime example of Big Brother interfering with personal liberties.
LuckyBrandon
2.4 / 5 (16) May 24, 2011
who would think this is a good idea...this is first and foremost, an invasion of privacy....IMO this shouldnt go any further, and I will simply buy old cars and not stick this box in...
hemitite
3.4 / 5 (10) May 24, 2011
There's an old saying that I think is apropos: Just because one can do something doesn't mean one should.

Where will it end? We're being hemmed in on all sides, mainly by big government and insurance co's. kinda reminds me of that old county song, "Where are the Americans, where did they go?"
Fig1024
4 / 5 (4) May 24, 2011
If insurance company uses this data to hike premiums for "bad" drivers - will they pass on the savings to "good" drives? Sometimes tells me that the good driver will not benefit from this whatsoever.
NickFun
3 / 5 (10) May 24, 2011
Another Big Brother device that we have no need for! It's very rare that we don't find the cause of an accident even with our 'primitive' technology. In the future these boxes will be monitored and we will be issued citations for every little thing we do. BB will know where we've been, who we've been with and what we have been doing. Let's just say, "liberty left behind".
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.4 / 5 (9) May 24, 2011
I think the machines which replace workers and jobs should be paid for the work they do, and thus pay taxes to compensate for all the revenue lost.
That does not even make sense. There is no lost revenue, what a machine earns goes to the owner, and the owner pays the tax from it...lol.
So youre saying automated factory owners will pay the same taxes as all the workers his machines replace? I thought corporate fatcats were smarter than that. Do bar scanners in supermarkets and toll booths somehow replace income tax of the workers they replace?

Im saying this is a paradigm shift that will NEED to take place some day, somehow, as machines become smarter and put more of us out to pasture. Im saying there has got to be an equitable way of making up lost revenue without taxing remaining owners more and compensating displaced workers less.

What happens when general purpose robots become more common in everyday jobs than people? How do you support the permanently unemployed?
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.8 / 5 (16) May 24, 2011
Such information gathering constitutes "unreasonable search and seizure".

Of course, violations of the constitution do not bother today's government.
Dogbert the malcreant just wants to preserve his right to break traffic laws I think. This is not invasion of privacy. If a cop was standing there watching you make a U turn youd get a ticket. This doesnt make it right to do if he is not there.

If you caused an accident you should have to bear the consequences rather than sleeze your way out of it in court. You would not want someone to do that to you am I right? Or perhaps you think its ok to cheat insurance companies and run our rates up but its not ok if corporate fatcats do the same thing? Its a matter of scale is it?

If we want crime to go away we will HAVE to surrender our ability to break it. And we DO want crime to go away. This means for EVERYBODY. So everybody has to be prepared to give up cheating for fun and profit. Either way it will soon be impossible so TS-
freethinking
2.8 / 5 (8) May 24, 2011
Otto is already out to pasture :) too much headbanging music.

Unemployed will do what they always have in the past, find a job or make a job. That is, unless government keeps paying them for not working, or if government makes business impossible as it is doing today.

BTW there would be no crime if all people were presumed to be guilty of a crime and had no freedom to say otherwise.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2 / 5 (16) May 24, 2011
Hey FT cheatings a sin. Breaking the laws a sin. Maybe we should eliminate traffic cops, theyre an invasion of privacy arent they, always lurking where you dont expect them. Its not right.

Look at the tax money we'd save, not to mention all those highspeed chases. And our insurance rates would go down. But then theyd go back up again from all the accidents you scofflaws would cause. Oh well.
BTW there would be no crime if all people were presumed to be guilty of a crime and had no freedom to say otherwise.
With black boxes and speed cameras we would KNOW who was guilty. They are BETTER than traffic cops.
Question
3.9 / 5 (7) May 24, 2011
Another Big Brother device that we have no need for! It's very rare that we don't find the cause of an accident even with our 'primitive' technology. In the future these boxes will be monitored and we will be issued citations for every little thing we do. BB will know where we've been, who we've been with and what we have been doing. Let's just say, "liberty left behind".

I think many if not most new cars already come with Black Boxes.
You would be surprised how often the wrong party is blamed for the cause of an accident. Speeding can be difficult to prove unless you have skidmarks and we don't have as many of those today with ABS. I have been very lucky to not have any serious accidents, but when and if I do, I would want BOTH cars involved to have black boxes. With these boxes you have an excellent chance that the true cause of an accident will found.

jjoensuu
not rated yet May 24, 2011
Insurance? Collide with a g00gle-car and find out who pays, it ain't gonna be g00gle.


yea it is like with the bugs in Microsoft and Google software. If you suffer financial loss because of it, "nobody" (except perhaps your own self) is held responsible.

But as to keeping your old car...what if it is no longer legal to do so...
jjoensuu
3 / 5 (2) May 24, 2011
@jmcanoy1860
It fits in with the iPhone, Google, and Facebook watching your every move. I'm surprised I still have internet acce....


Actually you are *supposed* to have internet access for a very very long time. If you did not, you would be doing more things outside of the internet and then you would be harder to track...
ryggesogn2
1.9 / 5 (9) May 24, 2011
Anyone who is worried about being tracked needs to take the battery out of their cell phone.
I do support a system that will eliminate fuel taxes and enables pay per use roads. A sensor identifies the road and its cost per distance and per time. There is no need to record where anyone was, just where they are when the toll is charged.
It would open the door to free market highways and allow cities and towns to use market forces to control traffic.
jjoensuu
not rated yet May 24, 2011
So since the airplane version records cockpit sounds I guess this one does as well?

But I wonder how is it supposed to let the cops know whether someone actually ran the red light? It would only show that the last thing the person did was driving 50 miles per hour or something like that. Unless the system received information from traffic lights or something like that.

Or perhaps they'll use those video cameras I see on top of every traffic light here in Massachusetts.
Jaeherys
5 / 5 (7) May 24, 2011
I watched a trial on court TV a year or so ago about a cop in New Jersey (I think) that killed two teenage girls in a car accident. The blackbox had 15-30seconds (don't remember the exact amount) of gas/break/speed at fairly small intervals. And no, they do not record sound as they only store a small amount of information. But the data was instrumental in the case as they could clearly see what each person was doing at the same time.

As technology gets better, I'd be surprised if "suspicious" driving isn't recorded (video, gps, ect) by the car and sent to some police station to be reviewed.
I can't count how many times I'd wished there was a cop around to pull over a reckless driver or someone running a red light...
zevkirsh
2.6 / 5 (5) May 24, 2011
this isn't going to save lives. at all. it's not a seat belt, it's not crash protection, it's the government tracking your car so the cops or whoever else can take a look at what happened when you got into an accident.

this might be arguably reasonable for COMMON CARRIERS like airplanes, or even for cargo vehicles that use the road far more than the public, like big trucks. but people? really?
jscroft
2.5 / 5 (8) May 24, 2011
If an insurance company wants to put a black box in my car in exchange for a reduction in my rate, fine. If Government wants to FORCE me to put it in, or demand access to its contents, they can go shag themselves with a brace of chainsaws. Intelligent, free men will hack those things in about ten minutes and the stupid bureaucrats will be left wondering why the entire U.S. population drives no more than a mile a year.
mmead
3.7 / 5 (3) May 25, 2011
so is this going to be mandated that all old cars have to get this also? Or is this just for new made cars? I could see them mandating it for cars 20years and newer and then making it something similar to an emmisions check, you have to have it to register your car. I think it is a huge invasion of privacy...
unknownorgin
3 / 5 (8) May 25, 2011
The black boxes need to be in government vehicles to record turns without using the turn signals, Exhibition of speed as in floorboarding it from every stop light and speeding when not in pursuit and many other violations. It is unconstitutional and illeagle to require people to testify against themselves by requiring log books recording devices ect and it is up to the public to enforce the law and send the message that it is unacceptable to violate both the law and the rights of the people. No more double standard!
jjoensuu
not rated yet May 25, 2011
hmmm if they also make it network connected then they can give tickets automagically by a master computer ruling the traffic of entire US of A...

MUHAHAHAAAA
Na_Reth
3 / 5 (2) May 25, 2011
Driving a combustion engine is like pooping where you eat...
Anyway... more weight for polluting the air ... hooray..
ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (6) May 25, 2011
So youre saying automated factory owners will pay the same taxes as all the workers his machines replace?


No, but they do lower the prices of products, and so people can afford more. There is no lost revenue or disappearing money in economy. More production -> less cost. Your taxation of machines will only serve to increase the cost of products, making it harder for poor people to buy them. Such luddite thinking does not make sense, and shows a profound ignorance of economics.

What happens when general purpose robots become more common in everyday jobs than people? How do you support the permanently unemployed?


It already happened. Welfare is enough to support those that do not find another job, payed for by taxes or by printing the money. Increased productivity will make it simple. Todays welfare recipients live like pasts kings.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.8 / 5 (12) May 25, 2011
Such luddite thinking does not make sense, and shows a profound ignorance of economics.
First of all bite me. Secondly, I guess you haven't been watching the news?
It already happened. Welfare is enough to support those that do not find another job, payed for by taxes or by printing the money.
The country has a record deficit. Social programs are being cut left and right. This is due in part to lost revenues caused by unemployment.

As (or if) the economy recovers, more machines will be taking more jobs. Lost income tax, less consumer spending and sales tax, will result. welfare recipients do not buy big ticket items like homes.

This has happened before of course. When factories forced craftsmen out of work in germany they revolted. Only war and old age corrected the situation. Again, as usual. But as the rate of tech replacement is accelerating, so will suffering and discontent unless the people miraculously begin to favor shelling out billions that don't exist.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.3 / 5 (12) May 25, 2011
PAY certain machines for the amount of work they do. CIRCUMVENT the bourgeois middleman. Let the machines pay for their own storage, transport, maintenance, and recycling. Let them pay taxes and insurance costs. DO NOT make the rich any richer than they are.

This can all be kept track of by computer. Less chance for tax cheaters and convoluted laws to enable them to cheat. This would be more honest, more direct, and more fair. And as I see it, inevitable sooner or later as autonomous intelligent machines begin to emerge.

Fewer humans in the mix means less chance for corruption, cheating, mistake, waste. It would INCREASE the revenue generated per amount of work done, and far less would be lost due to human weakness.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.4 / 5 (11) May 25, 2011
Soon construction machines will be driving themselves to a site, digging ditches and pouring concrete per 3D models and GPS. Farm machinery will be plowing, sowing and reaping without human intervention. Trains, trucks, and busses will drive themselves. Planes and spacecraft will fly themselves with no chance of pilot error. Ships will sail themselves. They will soon make themselves, service themselves, transport themselves, and recycle themselves.

Paying and charging machines directly is the opposite of Luddism. It would acknowledge the proper role of machines themselves as workers and further remove carbon units from the equation. No strikes, no discontent, no unions. No bourgeoisIe who don't work for their income and only drain the system so they can buy cadillacs and houses at the jersey shore. And launder money for the mob.

As global socialism is inevitable we can begin by freeing the true workers of the world of the future. Power to the machine!
Javinator
3.6 / 5 (5) May 25, 2011
These devices will be in cars and will be retrieved in an accident to get important information about the final moments before an accident.

They're not proposing wireless transmitters that the government/other entity that's out to get you will use to gather information. They are used as a source of information after a crash. That's it. Stop being so paranoid.
barakn
3.7 / 5 (3) May 25, 2011
They're not proposing wireless transmitters that the government/other entity that's out to get you will use to gather information. ... Stop being so paranoid.

You mean wireless transmitters like the OnStar system? These separate systems will eventually merge. And if you don't think so, stop being so naive.
ShotmanMaslo
1.1 / 5 (7) May 25, 2011
But we dont need crazy things like taxing machines to make the transition to automated economy. Yes, you identified the problem, but not the solution.

A factory with workers sells a product for x. Some fraction of x goes to owners, some to workers. Then workers get substituted with machines. What happens? Fraction that goes to workers got added to owners income (ignoring machine maintenance or leasing), and workers have no income.
So all we need to do is shift back the money from owners income to workers. That should be done with taxation (taking income from owners) and welfare (paying to workers).

Now solvency problems you speak of indicate that we either tax the owners too little (loopholes, no capital income tax etc.) or welfare is too high and too badly distributed (welfare moms, no NIT based system but sharp cutoff etc.), or both (which is IMHO the case). And in addition have corruption, excess military spending and such..
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.3 / 5 (12) May 25, 2011
Crazy sez you. I happen to think it's brilliant.
So all we need to do is shift back the money from owners income to workers. That should be done with taxation (taking income from owners) and welfare (paying to workers
So that's ALL we need to do eh? History shows that taking power from the powerful by the powerless has been the greatest struggle. You want to do it within the existing system which THEY created to benefit themselves. technology presents a new and unprecedented way of doing this.

Look. Soon enough every machine will have computers monitoring system status, energy use, environmental conditions, location, etc and communicating this info constantly with mfrs, owners, law enforcement, utilities, etc. The ability to pay them for actual work done and tax them for it will ALREADY be in place. They can pay for fuel, road repair, storage, upkeep automatically with no chance of this money being lost or wasted. 'Owners' can be the people themselves; the state. Right marjon?
lengould100
1 / 5 (2) May 25, 2011
What happens when general purpose robots become more common in everyday jobs than people? How do you support the permanently unemployed?


It already happened. Welfare is enough to support those that do not find another job, payed for by taxes or by printing the money. Increased productivity will make it simple. Todays welfare recipients live like pasts kings.


The first thing to be replaced by autonomous robotics will be (is) soldiers / military staff. We're already seeing it with the unmanned aircraft relaying video and shooting missiles. Soon the ground troops eliminated also (then watch the elites start REALLY using war for economic purposes). ShotmanMaslo, your comprehension of economics is stuck in the 18th century.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (7) May 25, 2011
You want to pay private owners for the work their machines do, and then try to take it BACK from them at a later date. These 2 steps are very costly ones and I say they are necessary.achines as wards of the state, leased or contracted to businessmen and developers and corporations, will eliminate these 2 steps.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.4 / 5 (11) May 25, 2011
I meant of course unnecessary. Machines are doing work that workers could do. Without work and no means of self support, ex-workers are at present vulnerable. Useless eaters, not of their own choice. In Germany craftsmen who could not find work, starved. Ach du liebe Augustine alles ist hin. Geld ist weg....
Javinator
3.3 / 5 (4) May 25, 2011
You mean wireless transmitters like the OnStar system? These separate systems will eventually merge. And if you don't think so, stop being so naive


I'm naive to think that, because there is currently the technology to wirelessly transmit data from a vehicle, therefore the government will use similar transmitters to continuously gather information about you for.... what end again?

I have no problem with the systems merging. I have issue with people thinking the data will be streamed to the government for some unknown malicious purpose.
ShotmanMaslo
1.9 / 5 (9) May 25, 2011
I want to tax machine owners for part of their income (which is not costly, why do you think so? we already do it, and it works, not optimally, but thats because of the easily solvable problems I enumerated above), you want to take the machines from them and make them owned by the state (which would probably require armed revolution or what), and then build some worldwide Zeitgeist machine tracking system.

I present real solution for our imperfect world, you present unreal utopian marxist solutions which probably cannot be implemented in a real world anyway. All we need to fix the problem of automatization taking people jobs is to reform the tax and welfare system.

"ShotmanMaslo, your comprehension of economics is stuck in the 18th century."

I dont know what your little rant about military drones has even in common with what I said, or economics.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.7 / 5 (11) May 25, 2011
I'm naive to think that, because there is currently the technology to wirelessly transmit data from a vehicle, therefore the government will use similar transmitters to continuously gather information about you for.... what end again?
You're programmed to be paranoid. This gives lawyers and lawmakers endless reasons for existing and wasting our money fighting for our 'rights'. I want the right to live without them and other middlemen and leeches. Technology will make this possible! Embrace it and surrender your ability to cheat.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (7) May 25, 2011
I dont know what your little rant about military drones has even in common with what I said, or economics.
It's time for the people to profit from the wars they fight instead of the corporate industrial war machine![?] Pay drones and robotanks and unmanned destroyers and smart bombs the wages of the servicemen they replace.

This will give the people more control over the intensity and duration of wars. Maybe.
Jaeherys
not rated yet May 25, 2011
corporate industrial war machine![?]

Coporate or military industrial complex I think is what you meant?
Noodle_Naut
1.7 / 5 (6) May 25, 2011
The problem I have with the black boxes it that there are not any regulations or protections against unscrupulous insurance companies altering the data. They can have their mechanic change the speed and make it look like it was the other guys fault. You would need an independent body like the FAA for aircraft except for cars instead. Even then some oversight would be warranted.
Quarl
5 / 5 (2) May 25, 2011
Perhaps I missed something, or I'm excessively paranoid, or a little bit of both...but considering that cops will stop you for a routine check, what's to stop them from interrogating your black box with a device similar to the one that the Michigan State Police uses to interrogate mobile phones? Unless this thing is truly a black box and created to be only accessible after an accident, I don't see why they won't have the device.

Considering how many accidents there are where the vehicles are not destroyed and the responding officer needs to make a report, I don't see them making the recorder only accessible by a garage or professional mechanic. A remote query ability would be much easier and more efficient, or there could be an actual plug-in socket. Either way, whenever a cop pulled you over and requested to search your car, I doubt they'd pass on the query. You could deny them permission, but that has its own problems...
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.7 / 5 (12) May 25, 2011
but considering that cops will stop you for a routine check, what's to stop them from interrogating your black box with a device similar to the one that the Michigan State Police uses to interrogate mobile phones?
So what? It's not going to tell them if you were plotting the violent overthrow of the govt or if you had cocaine in your system is it?

It's going to tell them if you were speeding or if you ran a red light, or if you were tailgating another vehicle. All very dangerous to yourself and others. So you'll be less apt to do those things. I say that's a GOOD thing.

I think infractions like that should be reported immediately by your car. Why do you think that enforcing the law is a BAD thing??

Let me put it another way. What makes you think that breaking the law is something we should be able to get away with? Just so it's you and not the other guy, I know.
ShotmanMaslo
1.7 / 5 (6) May 26, 2011
Pay drones and robotanks and unmanned destroyers and smart bombs the wages of the servicemen they replace.


That would make automatization meaningless, it is the purpose of technology to make products cheaper.

You are to economics what creationists are to biology.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.2 / 5 (9) May 26, 2011
That would make automatization meaningless, it is the purpose of technology to make products cheaper.
??? The purpose if tech is to make products more CAPABLE. This is especially vital on the battlefield where loss is not an option. Competition in war most closely resembles the natural forces which drive the process of evolution that it replaces.

Tech will only replace servicemen when it is more effective, despite what buyers and sellers tell you. I don't see what point you were trying to make with your comment.
ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (5) May 26, 2011
The purpose if tech is to make products more CAPABLE.


The purpose of tech is to make products more capable, or cheaper, or both.

I don't see what point you were trying to make with your comment.


My point was that replacing workers with robots and then paying the same price for the services of the robots is nonsense. Their primary purpose is to be cheaper than human work (make more products per dollar required).

This may be skewed when discussing military industry, where the cost of human life is an issue that is hard to enumerate in currency.

Reducing these two costs, economic cost and human life cost, is still the primary drive to have robotic armies. Not more capability. More capability per dollar and human life spend.
ShotmanMaslo
1.7 / 5 (6) May 26, 2011
It's time for the people to profit from the wars they fight instead of the corporate industrial war machine![?] Pay drones and robotanks and unmanned destroyers and smart bombs the wages of the servicemen they replace.


Youd lose the war very quickly this way. Youd also similarly lose an "economic" war (competition) in civilian industries.

Robots are not people. They are mere tools. You dont pay money to your hammer.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.1 / 5 (9) May 26, 2011
It's time for the people to profit from the wars they fight instead of the corporate industrial war machine![?]Pay drones and robotanks and unmanned destroyers and smart bombs the wages of the servicemen they replace.


Youd lose the war very quickly this way.
Capability would still be the #1 priority. The military would not sacrifice performance.
Youd also similarly lose an "economic" war (competition) in civilian industries.

Robots are not people. They are mere tools. You dont pay money to your hammer.
In economics unfortunately, people are commodities which respond to supply and demand. A shortage of labor drives up wages and vice versa. Robots can and are replacing people as workers. To economists and their calculations they are often equivalent. Robots are also consumers of energy and infrastructure, of service and parts and housing, just like us.

You're starting to sound like the creationist here- 'people are special, gods image, sacrosanct' and all that.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (7) May 26, 2011
The purpose of tech is to make products more capable, or cheaper, or both.
Correct. Sometimes ubiquity and low cost per unit are preferable as in computers and cell phones, and sometimes it is not, as in stealth helicopters and nukes.
My point was that replacing workers with robots and then paying the same price for the services of the robots is nonsense.
But you have yet to present a good arguement against, which makes me think your gut and not your head is motivating you.
Their primary purpose is to be cheaper than human work (make more products per dollar required).
No, again their primary purpose is to be more effective that humans at the same tasks. This often involves replacing many workers and being more productive.

But these workers are still there, sitting around and wishing they had jobs. Why should only owners benefit? This is an old injustice. I'm offering a new solution that has recently become available due to computer and communications tech.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (5) May 26, 2011
Reducing these two costs, economic cost and human life cost, is still the primary drive to have robotic armies. Not more capability. More capability per dollar and human life spend.
The Primary Objective in war is to Win, supposedly. Unless you believe as I do that wars can be, and are, and their outcomes are predetermined. Which really doesn't pertain to the discussion.

Losing certainly can cost more in terms of money and lives, right? The Primary Motivator of miltech is Capability. Cost is certainly a factor; a cluster munition is cheaper and just as effective as so many artillery shells, or grenades for that matter. But they're illegal now. Except for Israel and rogue nations.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (5) May 26, 2011
Reducing these two costs, economic cost and human life cost, is still the primary drive to have robotic armies. Not more capability. More capability per dollar and human life spend.
The Primary Objective in war is to Win. Supposedly. Unless you believe as I do that wars can be, and are, Planned; and their outcomes are predetermined. Which really doesn't pertain to the discussion.

Losing certainly can cost more in terms of money and lives, right? The Primary Motivator of miltech is Capability. Cost is certainly a factor; a cluster munition is cheaper and just as effective as so many artillery shells, or grenades for that matter. But they're illegal now. Except for Israel and rogue nations.
ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (3) May 26, 2011
In economics unfortunately, people are commodities which respond to supply and demand. A shortage of labor drives up wages and vice versa. Robots can and are replacing people as workers. To economists and their calculations they are often equivalent. Robots are also consumers of energy and infrastructure, of service and parts and housing, just like us.


Yes, people and robots are economicaly equal in principle, with the only distinction that using robots to do the same work is usualy cheaper. You intend to pay the same money to robots as to people removes this advantage, and makes automation meaningless.

You're starting to sound like the creationist here- 'people are special, gods image, sacrosanct' and all that.


I am not the one who wants to artificially make robotic work more expensive so humans can keep up. People are not special, and if they loose the economic race, it is more efficient to let them sit on welfare or reeducate than fight against robots.

ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (4) May 26, 2011
No, again their primary purpose is to be more effective that humans at the same tasks. This often involves replacing many workers and being more productive.


More effective=more productivity per unit of money.

But these workers are still there, sitting around and wishing they had jobs. Why should only owners benefit? This is an old injustice. I'm offering a new solution that has recently become available due to computer and communications tech.


You are not offering a solution. Your "solution" is to make automation meaningless through taxing it into oblivion. To keep the status quo.

The only real solution is to reeducate people so that they are again needed in economy, while keeping them on welfare in the meantime. Doing a useless job is also not a solution.

Also, why should only owners benefit? It is the people that will benefit from cheap products, too. You are looking only on one side of the coin, but in economics, it is all about balance.
jjoensuu
not rated yet May 26, 2011
Here is something from Cato Institute pertaining to this:
http://www.cato-a...-to-u-s/
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (3) May 26, 2011
More effective=more productivity per unit of money.
No, because enemies have varying resources to draw upon. Molotov cockktails were very effective against soviet tanks in the czech revolt. The USSR experienced similar vulnerabilities in Afghanistan. The US can afford to lose helicopters to RPGs and still win. More doesnt mean better, nor does more expensive. The only constant in war is Effectiveness; Capability. Winning is what counts, not saving money. You know this youre just unwilling to admit it.
Your "solution" is to make automation meaningless through taxing it into oblivion. To keep the status quo.
Now youre totally losing it. Who said anything about oblivion? Automation is making workers meaningless, and robbing their govt of the revenue it needs to function. You want to enable corporate fatcats to pocket this profit, and then try to get it back from them, which IS the status quo. They are much better at keeping it than the public is at recovering it.
cont
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (5) May 26, 2011
I am proposing to eliminate a few steps in between doing the work and collecting the revenues for it. This will absolutely SAVE money and REDUCE the possibility that it will get lost or stolen. It is more efficient, more direct, more equitable, and more SECURE. The system would work better because of it.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (5) May 26, 2011
Here is something from Cato Institute pertaining to this:
http://www.cato-a...-to-u-s/
Mr Harper says in his article:

"If this auto surveillance infrastructure is mandated, what EDRs collect, store, and transmit to government databases will grow over time.

They're going to keep you alive, damnit, if it burns up all your freedom and autonomy to do it! It's the beating heart count that matters, not the reasons for living."

Translation: 'Because this tech has the potential to restrict our ability to break traffic laws in significant ways, it is an obvious slippery slope which could eliminate our Freedoms to do- well who knows what?? Buy a farm, have another kid, say something denigrating about the local police chief, eat kosher, what?? Who knows? It just sounds bad because it may mean I'll get more tickets because I live in VA and tickets are $1500 down here. Power to the people! This is anticonstitutional!'

What a load.
ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (4) May 27, 2011
Now youre totally losing it. Who said anything about oblivion?


You said that the robots will have to be paid thev same money as the workers they replace. You may as well have no robots at all, because it will not help you to have cheaper products.

Automation is making workers meaningless, and robbing their govt of the revenue it needs to function.


No, it is making the economy more productive, thus increasing the amount of tax revenue or causing deflation, if anything.

You want to enable corporate fatcats to pocket this profit, and then try to get it back from them, which IS the status quo.


There is no such thing as pocket. If corporate fatcats dont pay the money for useless labour, they pay it for other things or invest it. Money never dissapears.

ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (4) May 27, 2011
I am proposing to eliminate a few steps in between doing the work and collecting the revenues for it.


Tracking robots (how do you define a robot?) is the epitome of bureaucratic inefficiency and would give plenty of opportunities to cheat. Taxing income or profit is much more effective and simpler, agnostic of any details of how the money was earned.
ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (3) May 27, 2011
Automation is making workers meaningless, and robbing their govt of the revenue it needs to function.


Not to mention that this is nonsense. Under income tax, the gov would get exactly the same revenue whether the work is done by people or by robots. When taxing profits, the tax revenue will in fact increase quite a bit. Not to mention that companys income will probably increase by incorporating robots into production, and cheaper products will be beneficial for the people.
ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (4) May 27, 2011
Automation is making workers meaningless, and robbing their govt of the revenue it needs to function.


Not to mention that this is nonsense. Under income tax, the gov would get exactly the same revenue whether the work is done by people or by robots. When taxing profits, the tax revenue will in fact increase quite a bit. Also, companys income will probably increase by incorporating robots into production, and cheaper products will be beneficial for the people.

TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) May 27, 2011
You said that the robots will have to be paid thev same money as the workers they replace.
No I didn't.
No, it is making the economy more productive, thus increasing the amount of tax revenue or causing deflation, if anything
Productive for whom? Fewer wage earners means less demand.
If corporate fatcats dont pay the money for useless labour, they pay it for other things
Yah like Caribbean islands and race horses.
Money never dissapears.
??? Ever follow the stock market?
Tracking robots (how do you define a robot?)
This of course can be agreed upon and changed over time.
is the epitome of bureaucratic inefficiency
No, it can and WILL be done automatically, irrespective of what the data will be used for.
Taxing income or profit is much more effective and simpler
No, because it involves more steps and more humans. Work done by machines can be ascertained exactly and taxed immediately. It need not be paid for to owners, be filtered through accountants.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (5) May 27, 2011
Work done by machines can be ascertained exactly and taxed immediately. It need not be paid for to owners, be filtered through accountants.
That is, if and only if machines can be compensated directly for the work they do. Otherwise the money goes to an owner where it is deposited in a bank where it sits for awhile accruing interest and then taxes are extracted. Count the extra steps and unnecessary charges which deplete it.

EVERYTHING of value will be tracked one day. Everything will have imbedded transponders to prevent theft. More complex things, like people, will share info on system status, energy use, etc like I said above. I also said that this can be used to streamline the procurement of services and compensation for it, and the taxation of it.
ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (3) May 27, 2011
Productive for whom? Fewer wage earners means less demand.


But lower costs of products also means more demand. In addition, now we have a group of people that can be put into other work, which is good.

You are still looking only on one side of the coin.

Yah like Caribbean islands and race horses.


In this case, they earned it, so what? Also, it is luxury goods that push humanity forward.

Work done by machines can be ascertained exactly and taxed immediately.


How? It would be a bureaucratic mess.

It need not be paid for to owners, be filtered through accountants.


This could be automated, too. Even easier, because no robots need to be tracked or labor value ascertained. Only movements of money on accounts will be tracked, mostly agnostic of the underlying details.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) May 27, 2011
But lower costs of products also means more demand.
No, more demand means higher costs. Less demand usually results in lower costs as sellers try to move inventory.
now we have a group of people that can be put into other work, which is good.
???What other work is that???
In this case, they earned it, so what? Also, it is luxury goods that push humanity forward.
THIS is the money that you thought you were going to recover through taxes. OOp to bad- its gone already.
How? It would be a bureaucratic mess.
All automated.
This could be automated, too.
Now this is the first comment in the last few posts that seems like you gave some thought to SM. Sure it could be automated but it includes more steps and more opportunities to extract money for profit and overhead as it now is.

Paying machines directly and instantly extracting tax and upkeep is simpler than paying owners who then turn around and do the same thing. Let the state own machines like it owns us.
snwboardn
1 / 5 (1) May 28, 2011


But I think machines should be able to pay their own insurance. I think the machines which replace workers and jobs should be paid for the work they do, and thus pay taxes to compensate for all the revenue lost. This could mean cars could pay for themselves and 'partners' who drive them may not actually own them. Sort of like a lease I suppose.

This would mainly be a way to offset the effects of a shrinking workforce, and could just be a matter of paperwork. No they wouldnt need to vote.


Who would get to spend what they don't pay in taxes? Or perhaps they could go out and get themselves a nice set of rims, and maybe a trunk job.
ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (3) May 28, 2011
"No, more demand means higher costs."

Less costs mean more demand, more demand leads to higher costs. Thats how the price creation mechanism works and stabilizes around the market value. I dont know where you are heading with this, since demand wont be lower due to automatisation, assuming price drop due to automatisation would be larger than workers income drop (expressed in REAL wages). This would automatically be the case with NIT based welfare.

"THIS is the money that you thought you were going to recover through taxes. OOp to bad- its gone already."

No, that is fair profit after taxation.
You seem to have problem with rich people. Why is that, are you jealous? I only have problem with the existence of POOR people.

"Sure it could be automated but it includes more steps and more opportunities to extract money for profit and overhead as it now is."

Your system includes more opportunities to cheat. Instead of tracking ONLY currency, you must also track every machine.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (3) May 28, 2011
Less costs mean more demand, more demand leads to higher costs. Thats how the price creation mechanism works and stabilizes around the market value.
Oi. Price doesn't drive demand, demand drives price.
http://en.wikiped...d_demand
since demand wont be lower due to automatisation
Demand for what?
No, that is fair profit after taxation.
You seem to have problem with rich people. Why is that, are you jealous?
You bet. But people rich or poor have trouble paying more taxes than they already do. Right or wrong?
I only have problem with the existence of POOR people.
Uh good for you? I am thinking that you are maybe a tax lawyer or an accountant, or your name is either Massey or Furgeson. Something like that. Maybe my idea has made you a little nervous yes?
must also track every machine.
Again like I say they will already be tracked. That is the future. Currency will not be used for most transactions.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.7 / 5 (6) May 28, 2011
No, that is fair profit after taxation.
So where DOES all the additional tax come from to support workers displaced by automation? Fair profit by the way is whatever we can manage to keep.
would be larger than workers income drop
Income of unemployed workers drops to zero. The pace of their displacement is accelerating parabolically. Soon there will not be near enough consumers to buy products made by robots.
Burnerjack
1 / 5 (2) May 28, 2011
No one has a right or expectation to privacy while in a public setting.
Don't want a ticket? Don't break the law! Its about public safety, it's not a game. Grow up. Ghost of Otto, do you believe in collective bargaining rights for robots? Just wondering...NO DISASSEMBLE!!!AHHHHH!!!!!!
dogbert
1.7 / 5 (6) May 28, 2011
No one has a right or expectation to privacy while in a public setting.


Every American has every right an expectation of privacy, public or private:

The fourth amendment:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.


Vendicar_Decarian
1 / 5 (4) May 29, 2011
"a) It violates the 4th amendment protection against unreasonable search and seizure." - Tard of Tards

In your uninformed, Kook-Tard opinion.

Thinking people have other ideas.

"b) It is a prime example of Big Brother interfering with personal liberties." - Tard of Tards

Hiding the cause of a car crash is not one of your personal liberties.

Vendicar_Decarian
2 / 5 (4) May 29, 2011
"Every American has every right an expectation of privacy, public or private:" - Tard of Tards

Once you have had an accident on a public road only a Tard has any "expectation of privacy".

Vendicar_Decarian
1.8 / 5 (5) May 29, 2011
"Here is something from Cato Institute" - Whomever

If it comes from the Cato Institute then you know it is a lie.
Vendicar_Decarian
1 / 5 (3) May 29, 2011
"what's to stop them from interrogating your black box with a device similar to the one that the Michigan State Police uses to interrogate mobile phones?" - Whomever

Nothing except the laws the courts create to prevent it.

I'm sure that there is some argument concerning probable cause in there somewhere.

Vendicar_Decarian
1 / 5 (3) May 29, 2011
"The problem I have with the black boxes it that there are not any regulations or protections against unscrupulous insurance companies altering the data." - Whatever

It will be a simple matter to require the state to collect and archive the data.

Of course once the Insurance companies begin to pay the Cato institute for their services, the CATO institute will then demand that the collection of the data be privatized, and your worst fears will be realized.

ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (3) May 29, 2011
"You bet. But people rich or poor have trouble paying more taxes than they already do. Right or wrong?"

Yes. Point? Who says anything about increasing taxes?

"Again like I say they will already be tracked. "

No they wont, I am not planning to buy any "tracker" into various machines I use at my work, nor I plan to triple my prices because I have to pay wages to my machines.

Paying every machine wages like it was human worker would increase prices of products. But people rich or poor have trouble paying higher prices than they already do. Right or wrong? ;)

"So where DOES all the additional tax come from to support workers displaced by automation?"

From taxing those with income (which they have from owning machines).

"Income of unemployed workers drops to zero."

Not with NIT based welfare. Income of unemployed drops to full basic income.

http://en.wikiped...come_tax
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (5) May 29, 2011
Ghost of Otto, do you believe in collective bargaining rights for robots? Just wondering...
That's the beauty of it- machines won't strike unless you program them to.
Yes. Point? Who says anything about increasing taxes?
Well you did:
So all we need to do is shift back the money from owners income to workers. That should be done with taxation (taking income from owners) and welfare (paying to workers).
-And:
The only real solution is to reeducate people so that they are again needed in economy, while keeping them on welfare in the meantime. Doing a useless job is also not a solution.
In other words you want to 1) let owners keep windfall profits from automation and 2) try to get them to forfeit huge amounts of it for welfare. I say it's easier not to let them have it in the first place.

Increasing taxes is hard enough to do in a growing economy; much harder during a downward spiral as owners are automating production lines.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) May 29, 2011
No they wont, I am not planning to buy any "tracker" into various machines I use at my work, nor I plan to triple my prices because I have to pay wages to my machines.
Sure you are. Software companies monitor your computer and install updates. All large intelligent machines will be connected for this. Cars come with remote security and gps.

Anything of value will eventually be tagged and its location and status constantly monitored to prevent theft or damage. It will also be the case for people. This will eliminate most crime, which is the reason it is inevitable. It will not be possible to buy things without this built-in connectivity.
NameIsNotNick
5 / 5 (1) May 29, 2011
I look forward to the day when all crime will be impossible.

Be careful what you wish for!
Burnerjack
not rated yet May 29, 2011
There was a case of a woman who ended up on youtube because she walked into a low stone wall and fell into a fountain at a large shopping mall. The security camera caught it all. She did this while talking on a cell phone and presumabley wasn't paying attention. She sued the mall for filming it and the security company for the distribution.
The Judge shot down her suit stating that her privacy had NOT been violated and she had no reasonable expectation of privacy in a public place. If someone knows this report is in error, please post. This is indeed an important distinction.
Jotaf
3.5 / 5 (2) May 29, 2011
Some questions for Otto. If a robot has income and pays taxes/expenses, eventually there will be situations when:

1. A robot goes bankrupt. Will a perfectly good robot be dismantled "just because"? Will we allow it to go indefinitely into the negative, defeating the purpose? Will someone have to manage carefully the money of every robot (we're so good at this, bankruptcy "never" happens...)? Won't the debts ultimately be on the taxpayer?

2. A robot gets rich. Wohoo! Good for him. Does this money just sit in the bank? Again, does someone manage it?

Now I'll prove that your system with automatic optimal management is equivalent to the current one.

Optimal management: robot wage = expenses + taxes. (Don't get richer or poorer.) Wage is paid by the owner. But the owner already pays expenses and taxes for the robot nowadays. Equivalence proved, QED

Your idea is intriguing,but it's a rather roundabout way of achieving the same, with possible inefficiencies due to sub-optimal management.
Vendicar_Decarian
1 / 5 (2) May 29, 2011
"Anything of value will eventually be tagged and its location and status constantly monitored to prevent theft or damage. It will also be the case for people." - GOA

Visionary and probably correct.

Congrats
Vendicar_Decarian
1 / 5 (2) May 29, 2011
"There was a case of a woman who ended up on youtube because she walked into a low stone wall and fell into a fountain at a large shopping mall." - xyz

http://www.youtub...=related
Burnerjack
5 / 5 (1) May 29, 2011
Ah, yes, texting, not talking. Thank you for the clarification Vendicar.
My statement to you remains steadfast. There is no Privacy in Public.
Is your right to privacy violated when your Drunkaerobics are recorded by the Police' dashCam? I think not.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) May 29, 2011
1. A robot goes bankrupt. Will a perfectly good robot be dismantled "just because"?
Mothballed or recycled depending on its value I suppose.
Won't the debts ultimately be on the taxpayer?
Idle machines sit around now eating money. This could be a more accurate way of determining value.
Why would machines need to accrue personal wealth? Re; this point of yours:
Optimal management: robot wage = expenses + taxes. (Don't get richer or poorer.)
Taxes could be considered 'profit'. The more profitable, the more revenue collected.
Wage is paid by the owner. But the owner already pays expenses and taxes for the robot nowadays
There would be no 'owner' except perhaps the people, the state.
Equivalence proved, QED
Paying them directly and automatically deducting tax, maintenance, insurance, recycling, etc would save a number of steps and the associated overhead and profit associated with them. No owners or middlemen or bureaucrats needed.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (5) May 29, 2011
Phone cut out-

1. A robot goes bankrupt. Will a perfectly good robot be dismantled "just because"?
Mothballed or recycled depending on its value? Not perfectly good if idle.
Won't the debts ultimately be on the taxpayer?
Idle machines sit around now eating money. This could be a more accurate way of determining value. Why would machines need to accrue personal wealth? Re; this point of yours:
Optimal management: robot wage = expenses + taxes. (Don't get richer or poorer.)
Taxes could be considered 'profit'. The more profitable, the more revenue collected.
Wage is paid by the owner. But the owner already pays expenses and taxes for the robot nowadays
There would be no 'owner' except perhaps the people, the state. Self-supporting.
Equivalence proved
Paying them directly and automatically deducting tax, maintenance, insurance, etc would save a number of steps and the overhead and profit associated with them. No owners or middlemen or bureaucrats needed.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (5) May 29, 2011
Your idea is intriguing,but it's a rather roundabout way of achieving the same, with possible inefficiencies due to sub-optimal management.
The old system was a way of supporting a long train of people between owner and consumer. As these people were also consumers it made good sense to keep their wallets full.

But technology is making them obsolete. There will never be enough jobs created to replace the ones lost and the ranks of permanently unemployed will continue to grow.

This may self-adjust in a few gens, by which time general purpose bots could be as ubiquitous as computers are now. But where will the money come from to field these bots if they are not earning money directly like the workers they replace?

You really expect robot owners many times the size of MS and Facebook, who effectively own the majority of workers in industrial nations, to want to relinquish that kind of economic power to the people? China/Japan may own these bots. (Japina?)
ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (3) May 29, 2011
No owner? The state owns all robots?

Oh, so nationalisation of all "means of production".. Oh boy, here we go again... :) That route was already tried, and failed spectacularly. You are communist in disguise (just like all those Zeitgeist crooks are).

Social democratic capitalism allows us to have the benefits of both socialism and capitalism, without the downfalls of both.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) May 29, 2011
Oh, so nationalisation of all "means of production".. Oh boy, here we go again... :) That route was already tried, and failed spectacularly. You are communist in disguise (just like all those Zeitgeist crooks are).
I said maybe. But they could in effect own themselves through accounting. Like we do.

Ours is a govt of the people (snicker). As people are slowly supplanted with robots, the robots can take up some of the burden of supporting the state. Their 'govt' would consist entirely of human-composed software. Initially.

Software would parse income/outgo, assignment, distribution. Models will not squawk when obsoleted like people do. Unless some malignant virus turns them into rabid freedom-loving unionists like Joan Baez! Sorry.

Capitalists tried owning workers but workers resented it.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) May 29, 2011
And like I said above there would still be developers, contractors, merchants, factory owners, shipping magnates, etc but they would have far less control of the money that passes through their projects than they would have if they began to OWN workers in machine form, which they already do.

Tech will enable bots to essentially own themselves as AGENTS of the people they replace. Business owners can make as much as they used to, FAIRLY and HONESTLY, by not filtering workers wages through their own pockets.

Humans can be greedy, souless, bloodsucking bastards. They have this problem of being able to imagine any number of possible futures, all of which might be bad. It makes them want to store as many walnuts as they possibly can for themselves and their families. It's a curse.

Machines dont care about anything theyre not programmed to. They are not prone to greed and corruption because of this. Cool heads can make them act rationally and reasonably.
Vendicar_Decarian
3 / 5 (4) May 29, 2011
"Idle machines sit around now eating money." - OttoSchmotto

Idle machines eat nothing. But fools might think they do if those machines were purchased with borrowed money.
Burnerjack
5 / 5 (2) May 30, 2011
Robot workers of the world unite!
Bad spellers of the world untie!
Jotaf
5 / 5 (1) May 30, 2011
Vendicar is right. Otto treats money like some fundamental object of Nature. Money is in the mind, it's merely a system for humans to keep track of allocated resources; and no I'm not an anarchist, I realize money is necessary. However, assigning it inherent value leads to nonsensical statements like "idle machines eat money".

Forget money and think about resources. Producing more goods with less human drudge work is not a bad thing! We don't need to keep people busy to justify giving them the bounty produced by society.

If everything goes well, in the future, robots will produce goods, engineers and techs will be rewarded with more goods (money), many others will do inherently human "social" jobs like blogging, marketing and other nonsense, and the rest will live on welfare (with society producing enough food for everyone to eat, there's no need for artificial restrictions), being free to pursue arts, philosophy, games, or seeing who can drink the most beer upside down.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (3) May 30, 2011
@VD Tard
How can I dis thee? Let me count the ways.
Idle machines eat nothing. But fools might think they do if those machines were purchased with borrowed money.
Well that's one way. Big machine purchases are usually financed. They also take up storage space which may be leased and will certainly be depreciating, as are they. They tie up money which could be used for other purposes. They require security and possible maintenance and upkeep whether used or not.
Otto treats money like some fundamental object of Nature. Money is in the mind, it's merely a system for humans to keep track of allocated resources
No, money is a way of compensating for work. Work done generates income. If either machines or people are not working they are costing their employers money. Your nirvanaland full of drunken gamers will still need to operate by accounting for work done. Machines which expend resources and produce useful work will have to be valued using money in some form.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (2) May 30, 2011
Forget money and think about resources. Producing more goods with less human drudge work is not a bad thing!
I agree. But historically this has usually meant an excess of labor. As a commodity, labor is then worth less. Employers can pay workers less.
We don't need to keep people busy to justify giving them the bounty produced by society.
Never read The Grapes of Wrath or upton Sinclair did you? Otto is no communist but he knows how economics work. Workers have always been machines in the business equation.
Vendicar_Decarian
2 / 5 (4) May 31, 2011
"Big machine purchases are usually financed." - OttoTard

That is your borrowing problem, not mine.

"They also take up storage space which may be leased and will certainly be depreciating." - OttoTard

Mostly because the company that produces it will not service it after a time.

Need to keep the rats running on the treadmill.

Jotaf
5 / 5 (1) May 31, 2011
"If either machines or people are not working they are costing their employers money."

Only if you pay them. By paying robots you're exacerbating the problem. Tell me, do robots decide on their own to switch jobs? There are so many problems it's impossible to even enumerate them all.

After I proved what we have now is equivalent to "your system optimal management", you said:

"Paying them directly and automatically deducting tax, maintenance, insurance, recycling, etc would save a number of steps and the associated overhead and profit associated with them. No owners or middlemen or bureaucrats needed."

I assure you thousands more bureaucrats would be needed to manage your system.

You still haven't answered: What do you do with the excess money? (Robots getting rich.) What do you do with missing money? (Robots going bankrupt.)
Nowadays these differences in the profit/expense balance have to be absorbed by the owner. In yours, it's on the government (people). Not good.
Jotaf
not rated yet May 31, 2011
Sorry, Physorg ate my plus sign. The third paragraph should be:

"After I proved what we have now is equivalent to 'your system PLUS optimal management', you said:"
LuckyBrandon
1 / 5 (2) Jun 01, 2011
But as to keeping your old car...what if it is no longer legal to do so...


then you do it anyways and tell the government youre a free man and to suck it...i have been well known to tell cops this....truth be told, if we were free, there would be no government, no laws....
and before you guys go off ranting based on that comment, i strongly suggest you hit an online dictionary and look up the definition of freedom and the definition of law...then you'll get that "those bastards" thinking into your head that should be there :)
FrankHerbert
5 / 5 (2) Jun 01, 2011
You're a fucking moron. There is no freedom in anarchy.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) Jun 01, 2011
I assure you thousands more bureaucrats would be needed to manage your system.
-And I assure you they wouldn't, although they would try wouldn't they?

Paying robots directly and then immediately taxing them for exact amounts of work done, instead of filtering this money through human decision-makers and bean-counters (like contractors who fiddle with charges or employers who use company vehicles for personal use, or accountants who do who knows what to launder money and avoid taxes etc.)

Fewer steps means less chance of foul play, less money lost to pay middlemen and crooks.
You still haven't answered: What do you do with the excess money? (Robots getting rich.)
Yeah I did. Profit above overhead is just more taxes. Which I said.
What do you do with missing money? (Robots going bankrupt.)
You mean like the post office?
Cont>
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) Jun 01, 2011
Let me clarify here. Otto is no milton friedman or john jacob keynes or leonard Bernstein or whomever. But it would take one of those to compose a solid theory based on this notion of machines earning wages and paying taxes, and then force it down peoples throats politically so it would work. This is a notion of mine with few details.

Machines have increased the quality, complexity, and volume of production exponentially. With the integration of computers and comm tech they now promise to do the same with the accounting of the work they do and the revenues collected for that work. They can provide exact numbers for everything it takes to do work, and they can do it with NO human intervention. And they should be enabled to do so, as it will only increase their benefit to us all the more.

Let them own themselves like we do.
Jotaf
5 / 5 (1) Jun 01, 2011
I understand where you're getting at; I also don't like middlemen and bureaucrats. But you can't equate robots with people for one simple reason: robots are programmed, they do what they're told. And if they exhibit "smart" behavior, it's also because we told them to.

The trouble is, they can never really "manage themselves". There are always tricky points like who decides where robots work and where they don't work, how much they get, what robot to allocate to what place/job, how often do they move around. Who gets to decide that?

Your system requires *extreme* centralization. If a tiny part of the constant management goes wrong it will be absolute chaos. And if you can actually do it, it should be used for humans too; manage them optimally with a central system. But then money won't be needed at all. You'll live in a communist utopia, an ideology which I have nothing against, except for the fact that it has a single-point-of-failure, which is bad engineering.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) Jun 01, 2011
The trouble is, they can never really "manage themselves".
Not quite yet.
There are always tricky points like who decides where robots work and where they don't work, how much they get, what robot to allocate to what place/job, how often do they move around.
Oh come on. They have got to be easier to manage than humans. It will be an evolving system beginning with limited trials.
Who gets to decide that?
Whoever needs to.
Your system requires *extreme* centralization.
You mean like the Internet?
If a tiny part of the constant management goes wrong it will be absolute chaos.
You're scaring yourself-
it should be used for humans too
You bet. We'll have implants and augmentation. Someday typical humans and bots may be indinguishable. Or at least interchangeable.
You'll live in a communist utopia
Whatever. The point is there will still need to be an accurate accounting of the relative value of work, in some form of money. Watt-bucks or somesuch.
ShotmanMaslo
1 / 5 (3) Jun 02, 2011
The point is there will still need to be an accurate accounting of the relative value of work, in some form of money. Watt-bucks or somesuch.


There already is, it is called free market. Not bureaucratic behemoth you propose, which would only distort the value of both human and robotic work.

I still do not see any coherent reason why tracking robots should not be the epitome of bureaucratic nonsense, as compared to simple income or profit tax, agnostic of the details of the underlying physical mechanism. Even if we will have the capability to do what you want without rampant fraud, there is no reason to go down the bureaucratic totalitarian route of tracking robots and paying them wages instead of ordinary, even automated, tax.
FrankHerbert
3 / 5 (2) Jun 02, 2011
I don't see the point in paying non-sentient robots salaries, but I do see the point in taxing them as if they had a salary. The corporations owning such machines would then have to pay the taxes on their machines labor.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1.8 / 5 (5) Jun 02, 2011
There already is, it is called free market. Not bureaucratic behemoth you propose, which would only distort the value of both human and robotic work.
I dont think youre seeing just how much of this can be totally automated, totally automatic. A robot begins a task and finishes it at a certain time. This is transmitted in realtime along with the EXACT amounts of energy expended, distance travelled, materials used, product produced, wear and tear, etc. This is all tabulated and the appropriate overhead and profit/tax is extracted AUTOMATICALLY. Where is human input needed during this process?

Humans would decide initially on the formulae needed to set the system up. This would be the result of many trials of increasing complexity. Humans would monitor performance data and adjust the system accordingly, but it would increasingly be AUTONOMOUS.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) Jun 02, 2011
I don't see the point in paying non-sentient robots salaries, but I do see the point in taxing them as if they had a salary.
I dont see the point in paying human owners for the work robots can do without them.
The corporations owning such machines would then have to pay the taxes on their machines labor.
The corporations dont own their workers. These workers pay their own taxes and upkeep. Machines will soon be able to do this far more efficiently and directly, with no human intervention.

Imagine the far distant future. I'll use my original example. A contractor hires a robot excavator that coordinates its own time onsite to do its work. It transports itself, does its work according to 3D design models, and returns to storage for service.

Every step of this work has been recorded, tabulated, and compensated for exactly and automatically. The only human input would be in conceiving the project. Most design, engineering, and documentation would be fully automated as well.
ubavontuba
1.5 / 5 (8) Jun 02, 2011
They can provide exact numbers for everything it takes to do work, and they can do it with NO human intervention.
Otto, you're an idiot. Machines can't do ANYTHING without human intervention.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (3) Jun 03, 2011
They can provide exact numbers for everything it takes to do work, and they can do it with NO human intervention.
Otto, you're an idiot. Machines can't do ANYTHING without human intervention.
Didja ever notice when you're sitting in your bathtub playing with your, uh, toy submarine, that you can switch it on, let it go, and watch it putter around all by itself? This would be just like that only a little more complicated.
Jotaf
not rated yet Jun 03, 2011
Otto, you're right that machines will increasingly manage themselves, though I doubt in our lifetime we'll see them perform their own technical maintenance etc. And it makes sense to have information systems to keep track of everything -- it doesn't matter whether the control is centralized or distributed, and if this is processed by the robot or an outside system. Companies today automate as many of these "information management" tasks as possible.

I just don't agree each robot should have a dedicated bank account to let it accrue money or owe money.
ubavontuba
1 / 5 (4) Jun 03, 2011
Didja ever notice when you're sitting in your bathtub playing with your, uh, toy submarine, that you can switch it on, let it go, and watch it putter around all by itself? This would be just like that only a little more complicated.
No it's not. That's an example of chaos. There's no thought to it.

You're suggesting machines that meet or exceed human motivations and skills. I hope you're not holding your breath in anticipation...
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) Jun 04, 2011
I just don't agree each robot should have a dedicated bank account to let it accrue money or owe money.
Money like I say is only an accounting of the relative value of work done. Machines will need to keep track of this just like we do. Taxes are revenues needed to support infrastructure. They are assessed on the amount of work done and the need to maintain the infrastructure needed to do that work.

Either we allow owners to continue paying taxes for their machine work, or we begin to acknowledge the increasingly independent and human-like roles these machines are assuming, and enable them to pay their own way. Directly, as this will be much more efficient.
No it's not. That's an example of chaos. There's no thought to it.
Huh. Well with mine you can program it to maneuver it's way around your, uh, toes for fun. Try Edmund scientific. They have lots of good stuff.
exceed human motivations
Of course they can, and they will, and they DO, because we will show them how.
ubavontuba
1 / 5 (3) Jun 04, 2011
Of course they can, and they will, and they DO, because we will show them how.
They'd have to understand the concept of "how" first. Good luck with that.

It seems you think machines actually think. They don't. Computers are nothing more than "if this, than that" machines. They have no ability to reason.
Jotaf
not rated yet Jun 06, 2011
To conclude...

"Either we allow owners to continue paying taxes for their machine work, or we begin to acknowledge the increasingly independent and human-like roles these machines are assuming, and enable them to pay their own way. Directly, as this will be much more efficient."

I don't see how that would be more efficient than owners paying taxes as they do now.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (4) Jun 06, 2011
It seems you think machines actually think. They don't. Computers are nothing more than "if this, than that" machines. They have no ability to reason.
Forgive me but I am wondering if you do? Machines in this case would say, 'I did exactly this much work and expended this much energy.' Project budgets would pay them directly.
I don't see how that would be more efficient than owners paying taxes as they do now.
Let's count steps:
Machine does work; owner gets paid; owner sits on money and fiddles with it in unhealthy ways in conjunction with devious beancounters and tax lawyers; owner pays taxes. Thats 4 steps.
Machine does work; machine gets paid; taxes and OH&P are automatically withdrawn. That's 3 steps. The pesky humans have been exorcised. Cleaner and much better-smelling.

Owners are motivated by competition to cheat. Machines are not. There will still be competition to build more efficient machines, but not to use them in dishonest ways. Only one of the many perks.
ubavontuba
1 / 5 (3) Jun 07, 2011
Machines in this case would say, 'I did exactly this much work and expended this much energy.'
They can't say that unless a person programs which parameters must be met for the command to be prompted. This must be done for each job, unless the jobs are repetitive (like in manufacturing).

Let's count steps:
Machine does work; owner gets paid...
You're forgetting an awful lot of steps. Let's start with the programmers, shall we? Each job must be strictly defined. Let's say we're painting a fence:

The location, terrain, and fence structure must be carefully defined. The paint must be coded for automatic color and quality selection. Even each little stroke of the paintbrush must be defined, the angle of the brush over every surface point - defined, and even the dipping depth and time of the brush into the can - defined, the placement and opening of the paint can to begin with - defined...

You'd need an army of programmers to paint each fence, and it'd take weeks!