5
$\begingroup$

Imagine a world where digital intelligence (or DI) is near obsolete, replaced by biological intelligence (BI) whose programming lay within synthetic DNA. These biological computers have creativity, morality, and personality (and have rights similar to humans). They're specialized for surveillance, research, and other complex tasks. Humans are also enhanced with synthetic DNA, making for smarter, faster, stronger and more diverse humans. Nanomachines and microbots are practical and prolific, used for everything from hairstyles to DNA repair. Brain reading is accurate, immediate and non-invasive.

It's been found that mind control has limited applications due to the complex plasticity of the brain, but that doesn't stop old-fashioned methods from being enhanced by powerful technology. Additionally, memories are malleable. They can be altered by association and can even be blocked. (This technology works by getting the patient to recall the event and then waiting about 10 minutes before applying the false memory. This false memory can and often will be a sort of interrupting static, like an image, smell or sound, or some combination of them. It has a variety of applications.)

If you lived in this world and criminality was treated more like a symptom than an offense, what sorts of advanced technology would you utilize to treat those who perpetrate crimes?

In addition, if you were part of a totalitarian regime in this world secretly forcing scientists to work with BI to produce dangerous new war technology for you, what kinds of technology would you utilize to keep the prisoners and the scientists working against their will in order?

Basically, I'm assuming the regime would use both common and uncommon methods in their application, hence why I'm asking two questions. I've scoured the internet looking for applications for brain scanners and nanomachines in prisons, but I haven't found much. Thanks for reading this. (It's my first question so thanks for your patience.)

Edit: I've made minor alterations due to suggestions in the comments. I added a few more details about what sorts of technology is used in the world. I also added to the second question in bold to add clarification to what I had intended the question to mean. The scientists would be much harder to deal with because you're trying to control them while simultaneously giving them the ideal environment to work together and invent within.

$\endgroup$
  • $\begingroup$ Interesting questions. But i have the iompression they should be split into two separate questions. $\endgroup$ – Burki Jun 26 '15 at 7:14
  • $\begingroup$ Talking about DNA couldn't we switch off the genes that cause us to break law or shouldn't we? $\endgroup$ – user6760 Jun 26 '15 at 9:32
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @user6760 Breaking the law seems like it arises from a more complex interplay between environment and several (if not hundreds/thousands) of different genes. $\endgroup$ – Poelie Jun 26 '15 at 9:43
  • $\begingroup$ @Poelie no worry this is the future see title of OP where anything is possible I think we can reverse engineer our DNA and substitute it with synthetic electronic one the difference now can run diagnostic program while updating to latest firmware patch. In this case I think nanites taking on the role of gene ... $\endgroup$ – user6760 Jun 26 '15 at 9:53
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @RPHolmes Since this is the future, digit the word AI and say that they are far superior to DI or Digital Intelligence, or something like that. EI might also work. Neural synapses do technically use electricity though. Just an idea. $\endgroup$ – PyRulez Jun 27 '15 at 18:56
3
$\begingroup$

If I understand you correctly then you're asking two intertwined questions.

  1. How would technology be utilized to keep prisoners in check?
  2. How could war technology be applied to prisoners

    1. Criminality is a symptom, a symptom of what exactly? A totalitarian regime could paint it as a symptom of madness or some other disease which sounds nasty. Brain reading is possible so the regime could implant the prisoners with a device that will give them great pain or even kill them if they commit another crime. To the outside world, they portray it as 'curing criminals', because seriously who would commit a crime if they immediately go through the most horrendous pain afterward? Unknown to the general public is that the prisoners are treated as slaves of the regime; if they step out of line then the implant is activated to punish them accordingly.

    2. So what would we make our scientists do to improve this? There are several possibilities depending on what kind of war tech the regime wants. One could attempt to create biological warfare infantry. For example, use a trigger in the device that releases a deadly virus (quite probably killing the carrier in the process). If the regime is looking for more subtle war tech then a communication device that transmits directly from brain to brain (i.e. telepathy) can be used to (1) help communication in the field, and (2) let prisoners know that they are watched. Everywhere. At any time.

$\endgroup$
1
$\begingroup$

If you lived in this world and criminality was treated more like a symptom than an offense, what sorts of advanced technology would you utilize to treat those who perpetrate crimes?

Why were the crimes committed in the first place.

Was it a crime of passion? Then use some rage inhibitors, reduce their ability to get worked up enough for their emotions to override their morality. Possibly monitor them.

Was it from mental health disorders, many crimes are from people suffering from some form of mental disorder and not getting good treatment. Treating these people like patients and getting them the help they need would be the right way to go, both psychologists and some controls to help improve and speed up the healing process.

Was it from social issues, such as a criminally poor area, where crime is the fastest way to get what you want? Then helping meet their needs including education would be the most effective way to help.

The brain is very malleable and people can relearn many behaviors, depressed people can be taught how to avoid depression and many other things, this can be done now with our current technology, we just don't have it and those trained to help widely available. We also tend to treat all people as criminals and throw them in jail when many really need psychological help and treatment.

In addition, if you were part of a totalitarian regime in this world secretly forcing scientists to work with bio-computers to produce dangerous new war technology for you, what kinds of technology would you utilize to keep the prisoners in order?

If most crime is thought to be and treated as mental health symptoms (which many of them really are!) dealing with them appropriately shouldn't need a lot of 'preventive' measures. However, all should/would be monitored and flags would be raised when certain thoughts/emotions come to the foreground.

The biggest thing as a military application would be to research these prisoners as groups, monitoring their emotions and thoughts, and experimenting with group dynamics. How to push a group into a confrontation, how to prevent the same. What kinds of situations lead to different outcomes and how to manipulate them based on what you want to happen and who might be the best individuals in a crowd to push one way or another to get the desired result.

Won't need professional saboteurs to start a riot, nor special negotiators to get themselves in harms way to prevent one.

$\endgroup$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.