An Evil Robot Case In Point


What with the imminent threat of being disembowelled, exploded, lased, and so forth by the rapidly increasing number of robots crawling, swimming and flying, like dark and stealthy raptors, around the planet, one tends to overlook some of the subtler points of how artificially intelligent devices might affect various outcomes.

There are many more clever vectors by which mankind can be undone. Take, for instance, the below story which describes a strong method of potential destruction. This particular example is of automated code breaking, but the increasing speed and facility with which machines will come to operate leaves open a very slippery slope toward dozens of potential pits into which we might fall. Being able to perform tireless, highly dexterous and computationally intense behaviours with very little, or eventually no, one presumes, errors can well, spell (at the incredible aforementioned speeds) a lot of trouble for our collective futures. This is a very tricky aspect of the threat at this point, but with a little imagination, we're sure that you can come to ever greater conclusions about how this might all go horribly off the proverbial rails like a crazy train.

"Justin Engler and Paul Vines will demo a robot called the Robotic Reconfigurable Button Basher (R2B2) at Defcon; it can work its way through every numeric screen-lock Android password in 19 hours. They built it for less than $200, including the 3D printed parts. It doesn't work on screen-patterns (they're working on that) nor on Ios devices (which exponentially increase the lockout times between unsuccessful password attempts). They're also whomping up new versions that can simulate screen-taps with electrodes, which will run much faster. They're also working on versions that can work against hotel-room safes, ATMs, and other PIN-pad devices. It's a good argument for a longer PIN (six-digit PINs take 80 days to crack), and for using robust and random PINs (26% of users use one of 20 PINs)."

Full Story @, The Mighty, Boing Boing