Up@dawn 2.0

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Group 2

     Alyssa started with a presentation on memory manipulation.  This entails adding and deleting memories from a person.  What are the issues that arise when talking about this?  Could a person suffering from PTSD cure themselves by deleting a traumatic memory? I feel this could have a few good uses, but overall I believe that this idea would lead to a dangerous erasure of the line between reality and fantasy...true and false. If a memory is added to a person, they now believe this event happened to them.  Or if a traumatic event happens to a person, if the memory of it was removed how can they learn from the event or learn to avoid situations like it in the future?  What if they need to recall the memory for some reason -- ie. they are called to court to testify against a dangerous criminal that could be removed from the public if you can recall what they did (I know this idea is a little iffy, but just a thought). Here is a link I found on the subject - Memory Manipulation.
     Cameron was next, and he discussed RFID chips.  They are used for storing data and tracking whatever the chip is implanted in.  Currently, one of their major uses is in tracking animals.  One of the major ethical concerns is the use of RFID chips in humans.  Can be used to keep up with a patients' medical record to call up medical history if patients are unconscious.  Can also be used as a method for payment so you don't have to carry a credit card...just scan your hand.  Are we de-humanizing ourselves by doing this?  There are also issues with people taking advantage and possibly "hacking" your information and taking advantage of this.  Many people had concerns about these issues.  "People could scan it anytime." "People could track me." "They could cut the RFID chip out of you." "Could police abuse this system?" These are just a few of the concerns brought up.  Here is a link to an article I found - RFID Privacy Concerns.
      Kat went into science fiction movies.  She started with Gattaca, a movie about eugenics.  It delves into a world where people are "classed" by whether people are genetically modified or not.  Would a hierarchy arise if people start to accept genetic modification?  Next, she discussed the Bicentennial Man.  A robot butler wants to become a human, so he comes up with a way to "humanize" himself, and eventually age and die.  What does it take to be human?  At what point (if ever) does Andrew become human?  We talked a bit about self-awareness and introspection.  Next we discussed the movie AI.  It follows an unconditionally loving robot boy who is made to love a woman whose son is suffering from an deadly disease.  Do robots (if self aware) have rights?  What would it take for David to be considered a "real boy?"  Do we have the right to destroy robots for our entertainment if they are self aware?  We also touched on the sex robots in the movie.  Then we talked about Repo Men.  A world where technological organs can be bought on credit to save your life, but if you don't pay then repo men will reposes your organ.  It follows one of these repo men who ends up with one of these organs but he did not consent to getting it.  It is a good thing to save a life with an organ the person will not be able to pay for?  Does this cast a bad light on the use of possibly life saving artificial organs?  We also touched on the Island.  Here is a link to an article about the ethics in sci fi - Ethics in Sci fi.

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