The Reading / Listening - Weapons - Level 2

The USA will spend up to $2 billion on artificial intelligence (AI) weapons in the next five years. This is the most it has ever spent on AI systems for weapons. The Department of Defense wants the most advanced weapons in the world. It wants better weapons than China's and Russia's. Defense bosses want weapons generals and commanders can trust and accept. These weapons must not make mistakes. A Department of Defense official said: "We think it's a good time to seed the field of AI. We think we can accelerate two decades of progress into five years."



Some of the new weapons could make their own decisions. This means their computer systems could make a decision without any humans helping. Many people think this is dangerous and could lead to innocent lives being lost. The Defense Department said these computer systems could, "independently select and attack targets with [deadly] force". It added that weapons using AI can now choose targets on their own. Military commanders do not want to let the weapons decide on the targets to attack. The commanders want to make those decisions.

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Weapons - Level 0 Weapons - Level 1   or  Weapons - Level 3

Sources
  • https://www.theverge.com/2018/9/8/17833160/pentagon-darpa-artificial-intelligence-ai-investment
  • https://money.cnn.com/2018/09/07/technology/darpa-artificial-intelligence/index.html
  • https://interestingengineering.com/us-department-of-defense-to-invest-2-billion-in-ai-research


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Phrase Matching

Paragraph 1

  1. The USA will spend up
  2. the most it has ever
  3. the most advanced weapons
  4. It wants better weapons than
  5. commanders can trust
  6. weapons must not
  7. We think it's a good
  8. accelerate two decades
  1. and accept
  2. time
  3. spent
  4. of progress
  5. in the world
  6. China's
  7. to $2 billion
  8. make mistakes

Paragraph 2

  1. make a decision without any humans
  2. Many people think
  3. lead to innocent lives
  4. these computer
  5. attack targets with deadly
  6. choose targets on
  7. decide on the targets
  8. commanders want to
  1. systems could
  2. to attack
  3. this is dangerous
  4. make those decisions
  5. their own
  6. being lost
  7. force
  8. helping

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

The USA will (1) ___________________ $2 billion on artificial intelligence (AI) weapons in the (2) ___________________. This is the most it has ever spent on AI systems for weapons. The Department of Defense (3) ___________________ advanced weapons in the world. It wants better weapons than China's and Russia's. Defense (4) ___________________ generals and commanders can (5) ___________________. These weapons must not make mistakes. A Department of Defense official said: "We think it's a good time to seed the field of AI. We think we can accelerate two decades (6) ___________________ five years."

Some of the new weapons could (7) ___________________ decisions. This means their computer systems could make a (8) ___________________ humans helping. Many people think this is dangerous and could lead to innocent (9) ___________________. The Defense Department said these computer systems could, "independently (10) ___________________ targets with [deadly] force". It added that weapons using AI can now choose targets on their own. Military commanders do not (11) ___________________ the weapons decide on the targets to attack. The commanders want to (12) ___________________.

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

TheUSAwillspendupto$2billiononartificialintelligence(AI)weaponsin
thenextfiveyears.ThisisthemostithaseverspentonAIsystemsforwea
pons.TheDepartmentofDefensewantsthemostadvancedweaponsint
heworld.ItwantsbetterweaponsthanChina'sandRussia's.Defensebo
sseswantweaponsgeneralsandcommanderscantrustandaccept.The
seweaponsmustnotmakemistakes.ADepartmentofDefenseofficialsa
id:"Wethinkit'sagoodtimetoseedthefieldofAI.Wethinkwecanacceler
atetwodecadesofprogressintofiveyears."Someofthenewweaponsco
uldmaketheirowndecisions.Thismeanstheircomputersystemscould
makeadecisionwithoutanyhumanshelping.Manypeoplethinkthisisda
ngerousandcouldleadtoinnocentlivesbeinglost.TheDefenseDepartm
entsaidthesecomputersystemscould,"independentlyselectandattac
ktargetswith[deadly]force".ItaddedthatweaponsusingAIcannowch
oosetargetsontheirown.Militarycommandersdonotwanttoletthewea
ponsdecideonthetargetstoattack.Thecommanderswanttomakethos
edecisions.

Student survey

Write five GOOD questions about this topic in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper. When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

(Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

Discussion — Write your own questions

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

(a) ________________

(b) ________________

(c) ________________

(d) ________________

(e) ________________

(f) ________________

(g) ________________

(h) ________________

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

(i) ________________

(j) ________________

(k) ________________

(l) ________________

(m) ________________

(n) ________________

(o) ________________

(p) ________________





Free writing

Write about this topic for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

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Answers

(Please check your answers against the article above.

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