Matt Beard, Katina Michael, Rachel Corbett with Josh Zepps, "Robot Ethics: Conundrums of the Future", ABC Sydney Radio: Evenings with Chris Bath, June 23, 2017, 8-9pm, http://www.abc.net.au/radio/sydney/programs/evenings/evenings/8623442
Citation: Katina Michael with Nick Rheinberger, April 10, 2017, "Robots at Aged Care Facilities", ABC Illawarra, Mon. 8.20-8.30am, http://www.abc.net.au/illawarra/programs/illawarra_mornings/
Robotic cleaners, driverless trucks - will robots take over traditionally blue collar jobs? How will our society deal with the impact of this? Professor Katina Michael joins Trevor and Nick on Talking Technology.
Original version here
Program: https://www.talkinglifestyle.com.au/Show/talking-technology/ (formerly known as 2UE, broadcasting to multiple capital cities in Australia)
Written by Fiona Pepper
One of Australia's big shopping centre chains is considering introducing robotic cleaners, with trials underway at DFO Homebush in Sydney.
The Vicinity Centres trial is an Australian first, focused on "automated night cleaning".
The chunky robot, which is roughly 50 centimetres tall, is a hands-free system with 11 sensors, giving the robot a 360-degree view which allows it to "operate and clean autonomously".
In a statement, Vicinity Centres insisted that if the trial was successful, cleaning contractors would be redeployed rather than dismissed.
"The focus of incorporating this kind of smart cleaning technology into our centres is to reinvest and redeploy our cleaning contractors into areas that vastly improve our presentation standards and our customer experiences," it said.
Vicinity Centres has more that 80 shopping centres throughout Australia.
At what cost?
But Professor Katina Michael from the University of Wollongong's School of Computing and Information Technology told ABC Radio Melbourne that she had some reservations about the new technology.
"I think they're very good in terms of the innovation side and what they're potentially able to do in replacement of a human," she said.
"However, I would say there are a lot of things that people aren't thinking about regarding upgrades, maintenance ... there are other real costs that people aren't thinking about."
Will bots take over blue-collar jobs?
So does the robotic cleaning trial indicate a shift in the roles people will be employed in into the future?
Bright red cleaning robot.
PHOTO: Professor Michael warns of the negative social impacts robots could have on the workplace. (Supplied: Vicinity Centres)
"We've seen ATMs take over banks and mobile banking take over bank branches, we've seen self checkouts at supermarkets, we've seen driverless vehicles," Professor Michael said.
She said she believed, based on previous examples of technology integration, the focus on reskilling individuals at Vicinity Centres was a good one.
But Professor Michael added she was concerned with the introduction of robotic security guards which are on trial at Microsoft centres.
She warned that we should approach this new technology with caution.
"We do have to think about the potential for harm and that's what I think we're not doing properly.
"Instead we're looking at new innovation that hasn't been proven and we're going at it at 100 miles per hour without realising, 'well, one of these machines could hurt someone if it malfunctions'.
"They're not foolproof and they do fail, and when they do fail it's a cataclysmic failure, unfortunately."
YOUTUBE: Are robotic security guards the future?
Professor Michael was also concerned about the potentially negative social impact this technology could have.
"What's going to happen with income inequality; masses of people will be effectively unemployed if this becomes mainstream and will it affect social order.
"Most [technology] experts believe that many of these kinds of bots will be taking over blue-collar and white-collar work."
The Vicinity Centres robotic cleaning trial is nearly complete; a decision will then be made whether or not to adopt robotic cleaners.
Topics: computers-and-technology, robots-and-artificial-intelligence, unemployment, human-interest, retail, homebush-2140, melbourne-3000, australia
19-year-old Joshua Browder in the UK has developed a "free lawyer robot" which based on input information generates a letter to appeal parking fines. It is believe the robot has successfully appealed $3 million in parking fines.
Dr Katina Michael, Associate Professor in the School of Information Systems and Technology at the University of Wollongong, talks to Nick Bosly-Pask on 936 ABC Hobart Drive about how far could this technology could go and what are the implications in light of other AI's like Amazon Echo and "Hello Barbie"
Katina Michael with Nick Bosly-Park, February 26, 2016, ABC Hobart Drive, https://soundcloud.com/936-abc-hobart/the-robot-who-could-get-you-out-of-a-parking-fine
Man with a chip-implanted hand at uni symposium
IMAGINE a world where a wave of a chip-implanted hand opens doors, turns on your computer, or starts the family car.
Or a world where your entire medical or personal history is carried inside your body to be accessed at the flick of a government controlled button.
Will there be a time when cyborg athletes running and jumping on artificial legs, arms, or even hearts, smash world records with ease?
Such Orwellian scenarios have now left the pages of science fiction to become a potentially frightening reality, with emergence of the latest generation of all-seeing, all-knowing technologies.
Just what the social implications of these emerging technologies might be will be explored during a three-day international symposium which starts at the University of Wollongong today.
Speakers from 17 countries will present more than 70 papers centred on automatic identification, location-based services, social networking, nanotechnology, and privacy and human rights.
Symposium chair, Associate Professor Katina Michael said some of the key topics to be explored will include ethical aspects of bar-code and microchip implants in the human body, the challenge of cyborg rights, tracking and monitoring living and non-living things, and internet filtering and regulation in Australia.
"We have seen an increase in the use of wearable and embedded technologies in everyday life, so I believe it's time for public debate on a range of associated issues," Prof Michael said.
"One recent example of an issue that has posed a number of social and ethical challenges regarding cyborg rights is South African runner Oscar Pistorius, who runs with the aid of carbon fibre transtibial artificial limbs," she said.
"Pistorius's artificial lower legs have allowed him to compete in open competitions, but this has generated claims that he has an unfair advantage over runners with prosthetic limbs," she said.
One of those presenting a paper at the symposium is Amal Graafstra, who has a radio-frequency identification chip implanted in the webbing between his thumb and forefinger.
One of about 300 implant "hobbyists" around the world, he can unlock his car and his front door and even turn on his computer.
Citation: Paul McInerney, June 7, 2010, "Robots of the flesh open door to future", Illawarra Mercury, p. 3.