Robots Could Soon Cooperate on Surveillance

Robots Could Soon Cooperate on Surveillance

Published By: Engadget, 4/13/2017

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Security robots could soon be able to communicate with other devices to identify and track objects and people, using a system currently being designed by Cornell scientists. The robots would collect information by sharing images and data through a central unit, so objects of interest could be identified and tracked. Such a system could provide added surveillance in the U.S. and be used by the U.S. armed forces in other countries.

Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level of Article: 8.2

Extended Discussion Questions

  • What are some potential benefits of designing robots to access and share information centrally?
    • What are some benefits of coordinating security/surveillance robots specifically?
    • In what places could coordinated security robots prove most beneficial?
    • What are some benefits of robots accessing and sharing information centrally for other tasks?
  • What are some potential drawbacks or dangers of designing robots to access and share information centrally?
    • (For example) What could the potential consequences be if one or all of the security robots were hacked?
    • (For example) Could such security robots be deceived? How might this affect how all the robots in the system track objects and people?
    • How could those issues be prevented or mitigated?
  • Should there be regulations about where and when security robots should be surveilling? Why or why not?
  • The article mentions the potential use of this system for drones. At what point in a surveillance, security, or military action should humans become involved? What decisions should robots be able to make themselves?
  • What are some pros and cons of using robots for security and military purposes generally?
  • What other roles do you think robots could beneficially play in society?

Relating This Story to the CSP Curriculum Framework

Global Impact Learning Objectives:

  • LO 7.3.1 Analyze the beneficial and harmful effects of computing.
  • LO 7.4.1 Explain the connections between computing and real-world contexts, including economic, social, and cultural contexts.

Global Impact Essential Knowledge:

  • EK 7.3.1A Innovations enabled by computing raise legal and ethical concerns.
  • EK 7.3.1G Privacy and security concerns arise in the development and use of computational systems and artifacts.

Banner Image:Network Visualization – Violet – Offset Crop“, derivative work by ICSI. New license: CC BY-SA 4.0. Based on “Social Network Analysis Visualization” by Martin Grandjean. Original license: CC BY-SA 3.0.

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