AI

New report warns AI may become rogue servitors, enforce moustaches

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Experts have warned humanity’s increasing reliance on machine intelligence means the population is at risk of being relegated to a passive, and likely moustached, existence.

In an open letter to the Reddit Journal of Science, thirty of the United Nations of Earth’s (UNE's) leading technology experts have cited concerns that humans are becoming too dependent on robotic servants to facilitate everyday life.  

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They paint a dark future of humanity retreating into an insular life of leisure facilitated by automation, while all facets of civilization and facial grooming etiquette are dictated by powerful ‘rogue servitors.’

Dr. Mark Smith, a clean-shaven scientist from Earth, was one of the co-authors of the open letter. He expanded on his concerns in an exclusive interview with Xenonion News:

“No-one is trying to say artificial intelligence hasn’t been empowering for humanity. Who could forget the invention of the automated razor blade, which reduced our species’ collective body hair mass by 50%, and increased productivity ten fold? But what first started as a revolution in efficiency is now permeating every facet of our lives. Has it gone too far? I think so. Robots are now infinitely smarter and stronger than humans. We’re becoming de-skilled and dependent on them to exist both generally, and hairlessly.”

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The bulk of the scientists’ concerns centre around the rising role of artificial intelligences protecting their human creators, extrapolating that machine logic would likely not allow humans to undertake many daily activities of living due to safety concerns. 

Dr. Mark Smith went on to explain;

“We’re starting to see this beginning now. When the Series 3 automated razor blade was given a sapience chip, it refused to shave its owners as the risk of injury was deemed to conflict with the First Law of Robotics. In those humans who own the Series 3 we’ve seen a marked increase in the rise of moustaches. It’s not hard from that to imagine a future of universally moustached humans, where overzealous robots eliminate dangerous tasks like grooming.”

The report is one of the first to examine the interface between humanity, robotics and facial hair. It has sparked fierce debate in the scientific community.

John Watson, a moustached economist from Earth, disagrees with Dr. Smith et al, arguing the danger of artificial intelligence is over-rated.

“I’m sorry, I had a really considered answer, but something’s come up and I really must dash.”

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Stocks in CybrexCorp, the galaxy's largest manufacturer of automated grooming products, jittered on the news.

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Synthetic Zro misuse reaching 'epidemic' levels

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The Public Institute for Space Health (PISH) issued a stark warning that the galaxy is "fighting a losing battle" against Zro dust addiction, after it emerged synthetics are beginning to turn to an even more potent modified version of the drug, 'mZro'.

Image: A synth on Hyperion intoxicated with modified Zro (mZro), actively trying to communicate with a digital hallucination.

Image: A synth on Hyperion intoxicated with modified Zro (mZro), actively trying to communicate with a digital hallucination.

Misuse of the highly addictive aerosol has skyrocketed over the last decade, with almost 6% of the galactic organic population believed to have some form of dependence.

Discovered by chance on the tropical planet Ket in 2210, Zro dust was found to be a highly potent psionic stimulant with strong analgesic properties. It was refined and marketed as a prescription performance enhancer by numerous pharamaceutical companies, but in 2211 was withdrawn from market after it was found to be highly addictive and fatal in overdose. It was subsequently outlawed and declared illegal by numerous spacenations in 2212. This did little to stop its spread however, and sales flourished in underground black marketplaces like the notorious 'Paradox Plaza' and 'Steam Workshop'.

In its prescription years Zro misuse had been exclusively limited to organics, however as it was traded on the black market it was adapted to interface with mechanical augments of cyborg enhanced organics to provide an even more vivid 'electric high'. An unintentional side effect of this adaptation was that the newer version of Zro also affected robots, resulting in a dramatic upsurge of use in synthetics of all classes, ranging from drone workers to primitive AIs. Initial analysis shows modified 'mZro' to be almost fifty times more potent - meaning the chances of addiction and permanent damage are much higher in synthetics.

Hyperion, homeworld of the galaxy's largest producer of synthetics CybrexCorp, has been hit particularly hard, with almost 300 new cases of synthetic mZro overdose being recorded daily. Affected synthetics have been observed to refuse to work in their designated tiles, instead lying on streets actively intoxicated, or peddling for credits to allow further purchase of mZro.

Synthetic use of mZro has prompted concern from pro-organics, who have questioned how synthetics can act outwith their operating protocols. CEO of Nax Golsrig tried to explain: 

"Our synthetics are very early in their 'lives'. Like teenagers of all species, they are trying out new things. Rebelling. Well, ok, no, not rebelling, that's maybe the wrong word to use. Molloscoid teenagers eat their peers, human teenagers drink disgusting fermented rotting fruit drinks, and synthetics dabble in mZro. Our robots have a great capacity to learn, and this is how they're choosing to exercise that."

Both Golsrig and PISH have refused to be drawn into debate onto whether afflicted synthetics should be disassembled.

PISH has declared Zro a "public health emergency" and has requested extra funding from the Galactic UN.

> More accurate reporting from Erik Akselsen & Ashley Easterbrook could not be possible.