Police robodogs are all called ToldYa


ToldYa as in “I tould you so”, of course.

Four years ago I warned that robotic dogs that can open doors could just as easily keep them shut, and we should be more worried about what the door means, rather than the robodog.

This year, robodogs could be finally, really used to keep doors shut or, more professionally, to “leverage technology to force-multiply [police] presence, as well as reduce [american, A/N] human exposure to life-threatening hazards”:

Police robodogs are all called ToldYa /img/robodog-on-mexican-border.jpg

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and its technology partners have just announced the successful conclusion of a test program to evaluate the feasibility of robodogs to patrol the U.S./Mexico border: “an inhospitable place for man and beast, and that is exactly why a machine may excel there”. Good news, surely, for the normal dogs that would have otherwise been deployed to those inhospitable places.

From “We build the wall” to building garage kennels? ToldYa. What next?

Whether all this is good or bad, you decide. In both cases, it is just sad that there has not been enough public debate about this before. Robodogs for police work were all too easy to predict four years ago, by me and surely many others. And this isn’t even the first case of robodogs actually used for “patroling”. Now, it is equally easy to “predict” that the next phases of this CBP testing will surely include arming “smart” robodogs with stupidly hackable rifles.

What next? Personally, at this point, I just wonder about two things:

  1. how long it will take for the robodogs to reach EU borders, where migrants are eagerly waiting for them
  2. how easy it will be to make these dogs useless with Wi-FI jammers or similar devices.
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