The internet's army of enraged anime avatars has a new enemy beyond their comprehension: a Twitter bot created by writer and activist Sarah Nyberg to make fools of them. Some lose themselves to hours of interaction, unaware they are ranting at a computer program.
Nyberg also cited barrl.net blogger Nora Reed as the project’s inspiration. Reed is best known for their Twitter projects, including a think piece headline generator and a bot that pitches terrible consumer products for women. Nyberg notes that she took a page out of Reed’s book by following only the accounts of real-life fish bait shops from the @arguetron account.
Engadget's Richard Lawler writes that it "feeds the emptiness of alt-right trolls" who are looking for fights.
Arguetron is by design not abusive or malicious in its tweets, and does not actively seek out adversaries. That's in contrast to some bots, like Nigel Leck's 2010 project @AI_AGW, which hunted down global warming deniers to provide automated fact-based responses explaining the science.
Nyberg reports that the record holder is an "infowars egg" snared by the bot for 10 hours.
Sadly, the bot appears to have been shadowbanned--or at least muted from search results and user notifications--on Twitter.
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.”
The critters at the Atlanta Botanical Garden look oddly … metallic? From the Georgia Tech School of Electrical and Computer Engineering: Their newly developed SlothBot is built to study animals, plants and the overall environment below them by moving as little as possible. It inches along overhead cables only when necessary, charging itself with solar panels to […]
Built by researchers at Harvard and the University of Colorado, the Harvard Ambulatory MicroRobot (HAMR) is just 2.25 centimeters long. It “comes up to about knee-high on a cockroach,” writes Evan Ackerman in IEEE Spectrum, and can run like hell. Four piezoelectric-driven legs carry it around at 30 centimeters per second even carrying its own […]
Despite all of our most fervent hopes, it doesn’t appear the specter of COVID-19 will be leaving us anytime soon. If anything, the past few weeks seems to indicate the need for social distancing and other preventative measures will likely continue indefinitely from coast to coast for a very, very, very long time. Of course, […]
For all their amazing growth over the past 25 years, the most impressive thing about the monumental rise of Amazon might be the speed and sophistication of their lightning-fast delivery network. Sometimes it doesn’t even take 24 hours for the idea you ordered to be perched right on your front porch, ready for use. The […]
You could actually watch a Tyrannosaurus Rex walk down your street right now. And no, this isn’t the latest Jurassic Park sequel. Of course, it isn’t real either, just a Google recreation of some pretty realistic looking dinosaurs transplanted right into any environment around you courtesy of augmented reality. Yet it’s just another example of […]