The "Trolley Problem" is a highly problematic thought-experiment about utilitarianism and morals -- ripe for skewering in the pages of McSweeney's.
The Ethics Teacher
There’s an out of control trolley speeding towards four workers. You are on your way to teach an ethics class and this accident will make you extremely late. You have the ability to pull a lever and change the trolley’s path so it hits just one person. This will make you slightly less late to your class.
The Meta-Ethical Problem
There’s an out of control trolley speeding towards Immanuel Kant. You have the ability to pull a lever and change the trolley’s path so it hits Jeremy Bentham instead. Jeremy Bentham clutches the only existing copy of Kant’s Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals. Kant holds the only existing copy of Bentham’s The Principles of Morals and Legislation. Both of them are shouting at you that they have recently started to reconsider their ethical stances.
Someone outfitted a Boston Dynamics SPOT mobile robot with a silly fake horse head and suddenly the future of robotics looks a lot less scary. As esteemed futurist Jim Dator once said, “Any useful statement about the future should at first seem ridiculous.”
Yesterday, five large department stores in the towns of Lindsay and Whitby, Ontario, Canada had to temporarily stop ringing up customers because every item scanned at the register showed up as Mr. Potato Head. “A point of sale downloading error caused item names to appear incorrectly,” said Cathy Kurzbock, manager of external communications for department […]
A guy on the Apple discussion forum started a thread titled, “Why do your Charger Cables have the lifespan of a housefly?” That question is probably enough to elicit a whole bunch of head nods from virtually everyone reading this, whether you’re an iPhone user, an Android owner or have virtually any device that needs […]
For all their power and capabilities, image editing software isn’t like sitting down to play a video game. You aren’t there to have fun. You’re likely looking to make a few minor tweaks to an image to make it ready to be shared, then you move on with satisfaction in a job well done. If […]
This is truly a golden age for fans of a big ginormous TV screen. Not too long ago, to buy a television over 40 inches usually meant wheeling one of those massive Mitsubishi or Toshiba projection monoliths into your home, consuming a vast portion of any room at a cost of potentially $7,000 to $8,000. […]