Has Science Gone To Far?

Josh, Emily, & Kyle

Editorial

The development of hacking, biological/nuclear weapons, and artificial intelligence has proven that sciences is going far above its own limits. Original developments of these subjects at first seemed to be harmless, but the advancement of these seems to cause more and more problems. These could be deemed unnecessary in some cases or causes a state of fear in many people. Though science doesn’t have limits as of now some should be set in place to prevent any destruction to our society as a whole.

Although hacking started out as a harmless way to improve model trains it has slowly evolved to something much bigger, “By the mid-1980s, hacking was a criminal enterprise. Hackers began to access computer systems and classified information for personal gain, stealing credit card numbers and pirating software and games” (Gale). It is starting to become a huge threat to governments with criminal enterprises, such as Anonymous, being able to hack into government files and weapon systems.

Yet another article published on the Gale Learning Center provides an introduction on biological and nuclear weapons in our world today. They open by saying “when used negligently, or misused deliberately, biotechnology could inflict the most profound human suffering.” Proving yet again science is going above limits by creating things that cause harm and fear in people. If limits were set the things originally created for good would not be used for the destruction of others.

Artificial intelligence has also been slowly taking more and more jobs since the 50s. People have been replaced and put into unemployment due to robots being faster, more accurate, and less expensive to the company's production. “Coming years will likely only see this problem intensify, as jobs that involve any kind of routine or repetitive work – mental or physical – are increasingly at risk of being ousted by automation.” Artificial intelligence hasn’t been developed as much as hacking and biological/nuclear weapons, but it does pose the question on if it becomes more advanced than us would it retaliate?

Though there may be some benefits to the development of all these things the ends don’t justify the means. They all started off as an advantage to help out, but now they can or could cause more destruction than comfort to people. Hacking is a threat to anyone with private information on an electronic device, biological/nuclear weapons pose a threat to fighting countries, and artificial intelligence creates a threat to anyone with a repetitive job easily replaced by a robot. Nowadays there are even people who only use the powers of scientific advancement for only bad things. There are terrorist organizations whose primary goal is to cause death and incept their ideas into others. If we could limit the power of science itself we could in turn limit the power of these organizations and other groups to come.
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Josh Staples Essay

Joshua Staples

Mrs. Harrison

British Literature Period 1

3 March 2016

Biological and Nuclear Weapons

Throughout history science has played a role in making advancements whose purpose is to make the life of humans easier. This is not the case however with biological or nuclear weapons. These “scientific advancements” are completely inhuman, unnecessary, and make people live in a constant state of fear. Science itself does not have any limit, we as a race have not discovered every scientific breakthrough, but I believe that we must place a limit on science because history has shown that we as a race always go too far.

In the novel Frankenstein by Mary Shelley there is a quote by Victor himself, he says “In other studies you go as far as others have gone before you, and there is nothing more to know; but in a scientific pursuit there is continual food for discovery and wonder.” (4.2) In this quote Victor is talking about how science is never ending and as a race we will never know all there is to know. Any individual could contribute their entire life's work to science and still not even scratch the surface. This I believe is good however, because there are certain things that we should not know or should not have done. I believe nuclear and biological weapons are included in this category. There is no reason to have these ridiculously devastating weapons and I don’t think our race should have broken through that scientific wall, which is why we need rules determining a limit on discovery.

In another article on the Gale Group website they discussed the growing threat of biological and nuclear weapons in relation to terrorist organizations around the world. They stated that “biological weapons have been called “the poor man’s atomic bomb”.” While some may think that this is a radical statement I believe that it is very true. Because of recent advancements in science and medicine we are now able to weaponize many diseases that we cured. This is yet another example of how we as a species have gone too far into science and discovery. We need to put limitations on advancement because if we had then we would've been able to stop the advancement of the development of these weapons while still benefiting from the cures and medicines of our generation. Instead we let scientist weaponize ideals and concepts that were intended for peace which is unacceptable and completely avoidable.

Yet another article published on the Gale Learning Center provides an introduction on biological and nuclear weapons in our world today. They open by saying “when used negligently, or misused deliberately, biotechnology could inflict the most profound human suffering.” This alone provides evidence that not only do biological weapons exist, but they were created because something that was good became corrupt. We haven't always had biological weapons, in fact they're roots go back to developing cures for current diseases. If we had put limits on the advancement of science we would have benefited from the cures that we had created but not allowed the weaponization of these peaceful creations. The things that were originally created for good are now being used to “inflict the most profound human suffering.”

Some may argue that while nuclear and biological weapons are bad they are a necessity. On Gale Learning Center it says “America has participated with the world's nuclear powers in an uneasy standoff of mutually assured destruction.” They argue that if we don't keep producing and possessing nuclear and in turn biological weapons then we will be at a strategic disadvantage. We as a nation would no longer be able to threaten other countries that threaten us and maintain this standoff. However, I would argue that if there had been limitations on the creation of these weapons then we wouldn't even be in the situation we are currently in. No one would need to live in constant fear of mutually assured destruction because weapons of such power would never have even been created. If we limit science now, while we may not be able to rectify past mistakes, but we can prevent future ones that may be even more detrimental.

With most viewpoints considered I believe that the only way to keep from committing past mistakes again is to place laws and regulations on the advancement of science. Anything deemed unnatural or dangerous should not be allowed to be created. I would hope that this would keep us from developing other inventions similar to bioweapons or nuclear weapons, which everyone would consider a huge mistake. We need to focus on developing scientific advancements to help people and to improve the longevity and legacy of our race.












Works Cited

"Introduction to Biological Warfare: Opposing Viewpoints." Biological Warfare. Ed. William

Dudley. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2010. Opposing Viewpoints. Opposing Viewpoints

in Context. Web. 16 Feb. 2016.

Block, Steven M. "The Growing Threat of Biological Weapons." American Scientist 89.1 (2001):

28. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 16 Feb. 2016

Nobes, Patrick, and Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. Frankenstein. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2000. Print.


Emily Brubaker Essay

Emily Brubaker

Mrs. Harrison

British Literature

3 March 2016

Artificial Intelligence Goes Above Scientific Limits

Artificial intelligence is one of the most controversial subjects being debated by scientists today. Stephen Hawking, one of most influential physicist alive, in an interview stated “The development of full artificial intelligence could spell the end of the human race.” AI, artificial intelligence, has been studied since the early 1950s to our current time. Scientist speculate that a human brain works similar to a computer and with developments they can recreate it. This is where the controversy comes in on whether or not the AI will exceed ours and take over if we succeed in creating it. With scientists exploring the idea of AI they are becoming an inventor/innovator of a whole new level of technology. Nick “Bostrom cautions that given that such machines would be intellectually superior and unstoppable.” If AI becomes superior and unstoppable it would make it impossible for any human to become an inventor/ innovator.

AI can have social implications such as eliminating jobs and there is no indication on whether or not the AI will be hostile towards humans. AI has been slowing taking more and more jobs since the 50s. People have been replaced and put into unemployment due to robots being faster and less expensive to the company's production. “Coming years will likely only see this problem intensify, as jobs that involve any kind of routine or repetitive work – mental or physical – are increasingly at risk of being ousted by automation” (BBC) and this causes a lot of panic in people. Though the taking of jobs by robots does create a sort of paradox. AI taking over a job of someone also creates a new jobs. Even more fear is brought over by the thought of AI being hostile towards humans and they become more and more advance. There is no reason for the supercomputer to be kind towards people “because AIs that are smarter than humans could not be controlled” (gale).

There are many problems with creating AIs that surpass an intellectual basis, but rather more of a moral one. Many ask the question if it is right to give artificial things emotions such as shame or embarrassment? Some say that “introducing emotions into (ro)bots is a virtual Pandora's box filled with both benefits and ethical challenges” (gale). For robots to truly benefit humans they would have to completely understand us and our emotions, but introducing the emotions to the robots could cause more problems than solutions for the reasons of giving it to them in the first place

Not all things are bad when it comes to AI, there are many pros to advancing the technology. “One of the biggest benefits to using machines with some level of artificial intelligence is that they could be utilized to do necessary jobs more efficiently” (HRF). Robots do not require breaks which makes them more cost effective for businesses. When it comes to dangerous jobs, such as space exploration, robots could take care of that for us. AI can give us a much better understanding of the things around us.

Though there are pros to developing AI it seems to always pose the threat of evolving a to the point where they could take over. This may not seem quite as realistic while the technology isn’t completely developed yet, but as it develops more and more there seems to be less of a need for human intelligence. The scientific development of AI seems to go above the scientific ethics of today's society.



Works Cited

"Artificial Intelligence." Opposing Viewpoints Online Collection. Detroit: Gale, 2015.Opposing

Viewpoints in Context. Web. 3 Mar. 2016.

"Intelligent Machines: The Jobs Robots Will Steal First - BBC News." BBC News. N.p., n.d.

Web. 03 Mar. 2016.

"Pros and Cons of Artificial Intelligence - HRFnd." HRFnd. N.p., 01 Mar. 2014. Web. 03 Mar.

2016.

Wallach, Wendell, and Colin Allen. "Autonomous Robotic Technology Could Pose a Serious

Threat to Humanity." Robotic Technology. Ed. Louise Gerdes. Farmington Hills, MI: Greenhaven Press, 2014. Opposing Viewpoints. Rpt. from "Dangers, Rights, and Responsibilities." Moral Machines: Teaching Robots Right from Wrong,. Vol. 189. Oxford University Press: USA, 2009. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 3 Mar. 2016.


Kyle Mathiesen Essay

Kyle Mathiesen

Ms Harrison

English P.1

3/2/16

Hacking

When the concept of hacking was originally conceived it was known only to a very small group of people simply trying to improve the efficiency of their model trains. In the 1960’s a group of people at MIT would hack their model trains to make them faster and work with more fluidity. Initially these “hackers” would be regarded as brilliant and innovative and it was a positive thing to be considered one of them. However in the 1980’s with the invention of personal computers hacking slowly became something much more devious. Now that everyone had a device where only a few lines of code could gain them access to anything and everything, hacking spread rampantly. Like many scientific advancements hacking started out as a harmless way of improving something however as it grew and developed it became one of the biggest threats to the security of the nation and people's lives. Through exploring what has been done, can be done, and should be done anyone can be an innovator in today's world, however there are limits which one should not be able to pass.

Before the advent of hacking the development of technology was seen as a progressive and positive development for humanity. However the aspect that someone with the right skills and equipment can access anything that someone owns digitally causes panic and concern. Before the developments that caused hacking to be possible people didn't have to be concerned about people accessing their photos or conversations. Accessing this information used to be nearly impossible so it was not a cause for concern. Now gaining access to an individual's personal information only take a few strokes on the keyboard and cheap equipment that people can buy online. Before the hacking was a concept people had a lot less to be concerned about when it came to their property and information. They lived in a blissful world where technology wasn't weapon. People don't realize “how dangerous is the acquirement of knowledge and how much happier that man is who believes his native town to be the world” (Shelly 38). People so often are obsessed with what can be achieved. They don't think about the consequences of these achievements and what it can cause later on. With hacking the people who carry it out often don't think about the dangerous effects it can cause. If hacking was never implemented many concerns of people and nations would be eliminated.

Although hacking started out as a harmless way to improve model trains it has slowly evolved to something much bigger. “By the mid-1980s, hacking was a criminal enterprise. Hackers began to access computer systems and classified information for personal gain, stealing credit card numbers and pirating software and games” (Gale). As technology has developed so have the capabilities of hacking. With these advancements hackers can steal classified documents, government information, personal credit card information, etc. So something once considered the peak of human intelligence and capability is now one of the most dangerous criminal activities. As an advancement becomes criminal one must stop and consider how such a thing happened.

After hacking developed into a criminal enterprise it became much more than a petty crime. Hackers can access classified government files and even weapon systems. Hacking is one of the biggest threats to national security. With the capabilities that hackers have today the threat

is very real that a group of hackers such as Anonymous could access government systems and control them. "The government targets Anonymous for the same reason it targets al-Qaida—because they're the enemy” (Ball). Since hacking is relatively easy compared to what it can access the threat of terrorists groups and other governments increases significantly as the classic spy seen in old films isn't needed anymore. Now all they need is a computer to get what they need.

Although hacking can be a horrible and terrifically scary thing some would argue that it gives people the ability to protect the nation and people. In the community of hackers there a few people called ethical hackers. These people hack in order to either defend from hacking or prevent it from happening in the first place. These ethical hackers are a significant help in the process of taking down hackers and perhaps getting back information. However I would argue that the majority of hacking is done with bad intentions. There are the select few that that hack for good reasons however if we had never come up with these methods in the first place none of this would be necessary





1. "Hacking and Hackers." Opposing Viewpoints Online Collection. Detroit: Gale, 2015. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 16 Feb. 2016.


2. Ball, James. "Hacktivists Fight for Civil Liberties and Free Expression." Hacking and Hackers. Ed. Margaret Haerens and Lynn M. Zott. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2014. Opposing Viewpoints. Rpt. from "Hacktivists in the Frontline Battle for the Internet." Guardian 20 Apr. 2012. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 16 Feb. 2016.


3. G., and Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. Frankenstein. New York, NY: Baronet, 1993. Print.