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The mundane world we live in is rapidly accreting the baroque trappings of a science fiction novel.
This is in contrast to the literary mainstream, which has to some extent spent the past century vigorously mining the rich seam of mundane everyday life.
If we ever develop AI or intelligence enhancement technologies or intelligence-augmented animals, we're going to meet the same mess, only even worse.
We need to work out how to compel moral behaviour by non-human actors, otherwise we're going to end up with monsters like ATHENA and The Operation. Speaking of ATHENA: ATHENA is not a single process ()— there are multiple instances of it running, some of them threads of the same process, others independent.
Automation is being applied wherever possible, with interesting consequences: face recognition software used on CCTV footage to identify rioters, for example. It's easy enough to deal with drunk public order offenses and speeding tickets.
But what does it mean when the biggest and most successful criminals run multinational corporations or get themselves elected president and change the law to give themselves retroactive immunity?