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May 19 2018


Google Employees Resign in Protest Against Pentagon Contract



It’s been nearly three months since many Google employees—and the public—learned about the company’s decision to provide artificial intelligence to a controversial military pilot program known as Project Maven, which aims to speed up analysis of drone footage by automatically classifying images of objects and people. Now, about a dozen Google employees are resigning in protest over the company’s continued involvement in Maven.

The resigning employees’ frustrations range from particular ethical concerns over the use of artificial intelligence in drone warfare to broader worries about Google’s political decisions—and the erosion of user trust that could result from these actions. Many of them have written accounts of their decisions to leave the company, and their stories have been gathered and shared in an internal document, the contents of which multiple sources have described to Gizmodo.

The employees who are resigning in protest, several of whom discussed their decision to leave with Gizmodo, say that executives have become less transparent with their workforce about controversial business decisions and seem less interested in listening to workers’ objections than they once did. In the case of Maven, Google is helping the Defense Department implement machine learning to classify images gathered by drones. But some employees believe humans, not algorithms, should be responsible for this sensitive and potentially lethal work—and that Google shouldn’t be involved in military work at all.

Historically, Google has promoted an open culture that encourages employees to challenge and debate product decisions. But some employees feel that their leadership no longer as attentive to their concerns, leaving them to face the fallout. “Over the last couple of months, I’ve been less and less impressed with the response and the way people’s concerns are being treated and listened to,” one employee who resigned said […]

In addition to the resignations, nearly 4,000 Google employees have voiced their opposition to Project Maven in an internal petition that asks Google to immediately cancel the contract and institute a policy against taking on future military work.

However, the mounting pressure from employees seems to have done little to sway Google’s decision—the company has defended its work on Maven and is thought to be one of the lead contenders for another major Pentagon cloud computing contract, the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure, better known as JEDI, that is currently up for bids.

Employees’ demands that Google end its Pentagon contract are also complicated by the fact that Google claims it is only providing open-source software to Project Maven, which means the military would be able to still use the technology, even if Google didn’t accept payment or offer technical assistance.

Still, the resigning employees believe that Google’s work on Maven is fundamentally at odds with the company’s do-gooder principles. “It’s not like Google is this little machine-learning startup that’s trying to find clients in different industries,” a resigning employee said. “It just seems like it makes sense for Google and Google’s reputation to stay out of that.” 

[…] One employee explained that Google staffers were promised an update on the ethics policy within a few weeks, but that progress appeared to be locked in a holding pattern. The ethical concerns “should have been addressed before we entered this contract,” the employee said.

Google has emphasized that its AI is not being used to kill, but the use of artificial intelligence in the Pentagon’s drone program still raises complex ethical and moral issues for tech workers and for academics who study the field of machine learning.

In addition to the petition circulating inside Google, the Tech Workers Coalition launched a petition in April demanding that Google abandon its work on Maven and that other major tech companies, including IBM and Amazon, refuse to work with the U.S. Defense Department.

“We can no longer ignore our industry’s and our technologies’ harmful biases, large-scale breaches of trust, and lack of ethical safeguards,” the petition reads. “These are life and death stakes.”

More than 90 academics in artificial intelligence, ethics, and computer science released an open letter today that calls on Google to end its work on Project Maven and to support an international treaty prohibiting autonomous weapons systems. Peter Asaro and Lucy Suchman, two of the authors of the letter, have testified before the United Nations about autonomous weapons; a third author, Lilly Irani, is a professor of science and a former Google employee.

Google’s contributions to Project Maven could accelerate the development of fully autonomous weapons, Suchman told Gizmodo. Although Google is based in the U.S., it has an obligation to protect its global user base that outweighs its alignment with any single nation’s military, she said.

“If ethical action on the part of tech companies requires consideration of who might benefit from a technology and who might be harmed, then we can say with certainty that no topic deserves more sober reflection—no technology has higher stakes—than algorithms meant to target and kill at a distance and without public accountability,” the letter states. “Google has moved into military work without subjecting itself to public debate or deliberation, either domestically or internationally. While Google regularly decides the future of technology without democratic public engagement, its entry into military technologies casts the problems of private control of information infrastructure into high relief.”

Executives at Google have made efforts to defend Project Maven to employees. At a meeting shortly after the project became public, Google Cloud CEO Diane Greene spoke in support of Project Maven, multiple sources told Gizmodo. More recently, Greene and other employees have hosted several sessions to debate and discuss the project. These sessions featured speakers who supported and opposed Maven and stressed the difficulty of drafting policy about the ethical use of machine learning, an attendee explained.

this is terrifying. i’m terrified.

Reposted bymarbear marbear
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May 18 2018


Creative photos from mom and her two daughters



Instagram : @allthatisshe

I was about to say I’m high-key the youngest child in ever picture…. then I realized I literally am the youngest child god help is this our destiny???

Reposted bybollabollakanadyjskazimapolskijazzkingofthejungleasylopathhindsightKabotanskrzacikzideshowbobslowianecznikmakroshaszraaMissDeWordebaggopannakiespunisherdnymartinsonpleplekalbienlatheabennieunconsciouslaudishitonarainbowkarolae


me: *does not in any way touch my glasses*

my glasses: *spontaneously generate streaks, smears, a map of the new york subway system from 1935, a baked potato, infinity war spoilers*



This is one of the best interactions I’ve ever had.

Two school age kids: “Oh look at the big white puppy!”

Their mother: “Come here, let me explain something to you. That dog is a Service Dog. Whenever you see a dog in a store like this you can’t distract it cause it’s working.”

Two kids: “What do you mean he’s working?”

Mom: “He helps that girl. You know how at school your teacher tells you to be quiet so you don’t get distracted doing your work? It’s the same thing with that dog. You can’t distract him.”

Two kids: “What does he help her with?”

Mom: “That’s her business. Your business is to not distract him so he can work.”

If children can understand so can you.

Reposted byGEEK1mietta-worldmarbearStadtgespenst


in 10 days ireland is having a referendum to hopefully repeal the 8th amendment, which equates the life of a foetus to that of an adult

abortion is currently 100% illegal in ireland with a penelty of up to 14yrs (rape is 7yrs, if even that) and up to 10 people travel to england to access abortion every single day

if you’re irish, remember go to vote Yes on May 25th. if you’re not irish but have irish friends, remind them to go vote Yes

(rb if ya can)

Reposted byStadtgespenstmarbeardingens
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Saying that rich people hate poor people misses the point, imo. 

It doesn’t matter if the rich hate the poor or if they actually love them deep down. They exploit and profit from the poor. A reserve army of labour is an intrinsic part of capitalism, it scares workers from organizing and fighting for their rights. 

If a capitalist saw the error of their ways and decided to treat their workers well and give to the poor that would affect their bottom line and they would be squeezed out of the market by their more ruthless fellow capitalists. Exploitation is literally unavoidable under capitalism. 

It’s not the morals of capitalists that need to be fought, it’s capitalism itself. 

Reposted bylillycreature lillycreature

May 17 2018

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Breaking News: Everyone is rich and all orphans have been adopted.

0128 da26




i’ve been comprimised 

i laughed for about 349583492547252 years

I’ve waited 2 years for this post to hit my dash again. Totes worth it

Reposted bymarbearStadtgespenstNudiniggyjeschgeselen34tatzemalborghettofiffeyrobaczeknicciekawegopyotrusovtzaniskowoc0ffeeSoulPLbiesyfiodorasereniteverdantforcewhynotmeshowmetherainbowwybuchmuzgucavebearRozenOhSnapoipojaravillainezupacebulowadianazetorangeugarteajemairefuiSoothsayerflamingokumquatCharmaquestfutureiscomingwhovillebollabollasmoke11cocciuellamikimotoxalrozalkainsidemysoulthesandlionSchweinekloetenshiffffferangeliqueeangeliqueeSzary
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This is the meme content I like to see

let me tell u something chefs love memes about how a kitchen works and this one caused my entire kitchen to riot and my head chef sent it to all the area chefs in the company




Chris Evans is a power bottom size queen pass it on




Someone says, “I’d sell my soul for that.” You decide to take them up on their offer.

“What are you going to use it for?” Duncan asked, scratching his head.

“Iunno, but don’t worry I’ll take good care of it. When you want it back I’ll let you know what I want to trade,” said Nate, and that was that.

Forty years passed, and Duncan never had got around to trading back for his soul.

“I figure Nate’s as good as anybody for holding onto it,” he explained once. “I was dumb enough to trade in for tickets to see a band I can’t remember anymore, and it’s probably just as well I didn’t have a second opportunity to make a more dumbass deal with a worse person.”

Nate didn’t often think about the contract that he kept in the dashboard compartment of his truck signed in Duncan’s blood, but when he remembered he just shrugged. He’d willed the thing back to Duncan in the case of his death, because he figured if that happened then Duncan would have to take care of himself.

He probably should have been more surprised when one day a faintly glowing figure popped into the cabin of his truck with him.

Nate carefully pulled his truck over into the shoulder. He figured this would probably take his full attention.

“Hello Nathaniel Graham Bourke,” said the figure.

Nate grunted in response, inclining his head.

“I believe you have something that belongs to me,” the figure continued.

“How do you figure that?” Nate asked warily.

“Your friend Duncan is deceased. Fell down a flight of stairs,” the figure replied.

Nate sighed. “Had he been drinking?” He asked.

The figure hummed as though checking through some mental list. “No. Tripped on his shoelace. Broke his neck.”

Nate nodded to himself. “Well that’s something,” he said. Lisa would have been so disappointed if Duncan had been drinking again, so it was good she at least had that cold comfort that her husband hadn’t lied when he’d said he’d try harder.

“Yes. Your friend is dead and so I’m here to collect the soul I’m owed,” the figure said.

Nate frowned. “Does it work like that?” He wondered doubtfully, “Because I traded for that soul fair and square, so I don’t see how that means I need to just give it away at the first opportunity to the first comer.” Nate wrinkled his nose. “You haven’t even introduced yourself. I’ve kept that soul safe for years, and done my best to encourage Duncan away from making dumbass decisions. I’m not letting it go unless you can prove to me that it’s going to good hands.”

“I am an Angel. What better hands then mine?” The figure asked rhetorically. “I will take Duncan Jacobsen’s soul to the afterlife.”

Nate raised an eyebrow. “Which afterlife?” He wanted to know.

“Duncan Jacobsen was a sinner,” the Angel replied.

“That’s as maybe,” Nate allowed, “but you didn’t answer my question. I’ve been taking care of that soul for forty years now and I’m not going to just give it away to someone who’s going to mistreat it. Duncan was not the clearest thinker, but he tried his best most of the time and I reckon that should count for something.”

The figure started emitting a smell similar to sulfur. (Nate hoped it wouldn’t take too long to get out of the upholstery.)

“Ah,” said Nate. “Well in that case I think I’ll be holding onto it for a while until someone comes up with a better offer.”

“Even if it is inevitable that your friend should end in my custody?” The Angel demanded.

“If that was true,” Nate replied, “then you wouldn’t need to negotiate with me. You could just nab it.” He shook his head and smiled crookedly. “I’m not a well read man, but I do know about salespitches.”

The Angel snarled, but Nate refused to buckle.

“See now you’re just being a bully,” Nate said. “And a sore loser,” he added. “And this is doing nothing to convince me that you’re going to take good care of my buddy’s soul. The opposite really,” he nodded to himself.

The Angel calmed abruptly. “You say you’re waiting for a better offer,” the Angel said with honeyed tones. “So, what would induce you to give the soul to me? What do you desire?”

Nate scoffed. “Already said, didn’t I? Just want to make sure Duncan’s soul is going somewhere good where it’s going to be looked after proper.” He looked the Angel in the rough position where its eyes should be. “If you can honestly promise me that, then we’ve got a deal. If not…” Nate shrugged, “then I reckon I’ll be holding onto this soul a bit longer.”

The sulfurous smell increased in intensity.

“This is not over, Nathaniel Graham Bourke,” the Angel hissed, and disappeared.

“Didn’t reckon it would be,” muttered Nate. “But there’s still time.”

After a few minutes of quiet, Nate restarted the truck and pulled out into the road.

“Thanks Nate,” came a thin whisper from the dashboard.

Nate smiled sadly. “No worries, Dunc. Got your back.”



me: i’ll get to it when i’ve the energy for that

me @ myself: but you never have the energy for anything

me again:

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Reposted fromNaitlisz Naitlisz viaStadtgespenst Stadtgespenst
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Reposted frommhorrighan mhorrighan viaStadtgespenst Stadtgespenst
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