Neurowarfare and the law


8 Responses to “Neurowarfare and the law”

  1. ill lich says:

    Wait until those weapons get into the hands of private citizens. . . does the 2nd Amendment apply to these new weapons?

  2. Michael Brutsch says:

    criminal accountability for war crimes

    That is so 20th-century. In this post-9/11 world…

  3. mdhatter says:

    “the potential misuse of such weapons radically challenges traditional notions of criminal responsibility by effacing the distinction between thought and act.”

    The last 7 years has been a challenge to traditional notions of criminal responsibility.

  4. Metlin says:

    @ Michael Brutsch:

    That is so 20th-century. In this post-9/11 world…

    That is so 20th century. In this 21st century world…

    On a serious note, weapons and war have always been the front-runners of technology. They advance our capabilities, create new economic conditions and new social orders (and consequently, new legal and moral complications).

    I’d be worried of living in a world where this did not happen.

  5. Michael says:

    Hey! I got the “text is wrong” error! And here I thought it was a myth.

    What I was trying to say was something like this (and if this is imperfect, it is solely because the system erased my original, perfect reply.)

    Effacing the distinction between thought and act? I’m sorry, I’m as anti-Pentagon as anybody (ask anybody) but even I find this to be balderdash of the purest kind. I can’t believe such an interface would kill someone if I simply harbor violent thoughts — and if it is, then I still made the choice to enable the interface. Thus there is still a clear intent, and a clear act, of violence.

    This guy is just media whoring.

  6. sweetcraspy says:

    I’ll admit to only reading the introduction, but I don’t see a significant difference between a person’s hands and a brain interface device.

    If I am a soldier on the ground, and I am shooting something, I issue some kind of neural command to my hands and they pull the trigger as soon as they can. If I’m a soldier in a bunker with a brain jack, I essentially do the same thing. Depending on the sophistication of the software, it might be something clunky like thinking, “Execute fire command alpha.” or it might be a simple interception of the same mental “pull trigger” command. Both systems have the obvious need to differentiate between thinking, “Bang!” and actually pulling the trigger. Failure to do that would be dangerous to everyone, friend and foe alike.

    Assuming that that technical issue is resolved, what is the problem? In both cases the soldier must issue a mental command that he or she knows will result in weapon fire. I don’t see any interesting distinction between act and thought there.

  7. Jeff says:

    The issue of vulnerability to ‘ware attack will only get more important as some of us run to have our brains augmented with the best upgrades. Charles Stross’s Glasshouse deals with this idea wonderfully.

  8. ekricyote says:

    This seems to at least partially apply to an anime series I saw back in the 90s named Macross Plus. A transformable fighter prototype with a BCS (Brain Control System) was involved in an “accident” when the test pilot inside, after being rescued from an in-flight total failure of both propulsion and control systems, thought he was in a prime position to apply a downward force on his rescuer’s fighter.

    Without actually performing the action, his sole act of imagining it caused his fighter to react in kind; the rescuer’s fighter was a total loss and the pilot was lucky to survive with nothing much more than bruises.

    Test pilot Guld Goa Bowman issued a statement today that the BCS control failure was suspect in his fighter’s actions. The YF-21 is grounded until further testing of BCS is completed.

    It wasn’t me, it was the one armed vehicle!

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