Monday 20th of May 2024

if it quacks like a duck and poops like a duck, it could be a robot...


Then comes Sir Walter Scott with his enchantments... Sets the world in love with dreams and phantoms; with decayed and swinish forms of religion; with decayed and degraded system of government; with the silliness and emptiness, sham grandeurs, sham gauds, and sham chivalries of a brainless and worthless long-vanished society. He did measureless harm; more real and lasting harm, perhaps than any other individual that ever wrote.

                            Mark Twain  Ahh... Mark Twain — never a lad to stop himself from a sharp criticism of what others might consider gloriously decadent and possibly visionary.  

Nevertheless, Scott's importance as an innovator continued to be recognized. He was acclaimed as the inventor of the genre of the modern historical novel (which others trace to Jane Porter, whose work in the genre predates Scott's) and the inspiration for enormous numbers of imitators and genre writers both in Britain and on the European continent. In the cultural sphere, Scott's Waverley novels played a significant part in the movement (begun with James Macpherson's Ossian cycle) in rehabilitating the public perception of the Scottish Highlands and its culture, which had been formally suppressed as barbaric, and viewed in the southern mind as a breeding ground of hill bandits, religious fanaticism, and Jacobite rebellions. Scott served as chairman of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and was also a member of the Royal Celtic Society.



Breathes there the man with soul so dead,

Who never to himself hath said,

"This is my own, my native land"?

Whose heart hath n’er within him burned

As home his footsteps he hath turned...?

If such there be, go mark him well...

The wretch, concentrated all in self,

...Doubly dying shall go down

To the vile dust from whence he sprung,

Unwept, unhonor’d, and unsung. —


"The Lay of the Last Minstrel" (1805)

                 Sir Walter Scott


One can smell the cow dung mixed with a whiff a week-long dead sheep in this poem.


So what harm did Sir Scott in the eyes of Twain?...  In the light of the numerous medieval games, stories and movies that are so popular with many people today — plus others who are fond of The Lord of the Rings, and of Wagner's Ring Cycle wash — was Scott guilty of inventing some weirdo fantasies that were not "Classical-bullshit" based, like the Greek and Roman myths, nor based on illusions of religious legends pumped through people's brain in an infestation of "sacred" texts? Who knows what was Twain's beef...  Was it the bland pedestrian style Scott used to write his "phantasm-historical" stories? Or the laziness of telling the same story several times over, by changing locations and times against different foes, like Doctor Who? On was the insane invitation to dream and visit the future past of decayed social orders, so bad that they were alien to Twain's progressive "reality" of the American steel railroads?  Or was Scott a fatally annoying pessimist? Hard to know, even if one is not a scholar, like me.  Overall, a few people would say that we have entered a decaying social order only precariously sustained by the hard-to-catch value of joyful cash. Our Turdy governments from pole to pole are trying to swat little fires around them, without understanding the harm they do to the moires of nature and to "their" own people — not mentioning other people, including those escaping the tyranny of poverty and trying to avoid the bloody destruction of war — wars that WE've started somewhere else for profit, under the alibi of protecting our (or "their") "interests"... 

Are most of our young people seeing the world through the crooked prism of the Game of Throne rather than peeping through the deceit of our masters crunching bad numbers after bad numbers to make an elastic illogical "economic system" fit best for the rif-raf? What illusions guide most young minds? A new App for an iPhone? Is the cell-phone dictating behaviour? Is pressing virtual button with one's thumbs at high speed, the modern skill replacing the handy use of tools, like chisels and hammers?


Should we make the switch and let ourselves be ruled by clever machines? Would not be hard for machines to be cleverer than our present crop of pollies...


Should the machines stop the useless human bickering — such as to what size a payola under the table for a building development application needs to be? Or stop us spending cash on warplanes that are obsolete two years before they come into service? Or promote Australian-built submarines that are automatically efficient at deciding where to go and dive? Should the machines decide to scuttle themselves before they and we make an arse of ourselves? And save humanity? This concept is not new... It has entered the recent folklore via the "Terminator" series... and countless movies with Transformers — in which our hero fights super machines armed with deadly ray-guns, with a matchstick — mechanical invaders and other "Toybots"... 


Here on YourDemocracy, we also entered the fray with Gus' Zutbots (and others).


The movie Star Wars is about to unleash its newfangled death stars, to save something, including a princess and the universe.  


Are Daleks such a bad species?


Peace, order and harmony were the illusion of the day since humans picked a stone to kill something and stood upright. The ways to inflict pain have been refined with machinery since, but the pain is still the same... except we've also invented painkillers and fun drugs that will kill us, but in the meantime keep dreaming on, painlessly...


In the days of Walter Scott, there had already been many inventions of machines. The latest having been the steam engine By Watt, improved on a steam engine invented by a certain Mr Newcomen. 

The times of Walter Scott were those of transition between a pastoral economy to an early format of industrialisation. 


There would have been rumblings amongst the lower classes. Their slavery contract was about to be rewritten for the worse. Necessary re-skilling and "redundancies" would have littered the landscape and filled the churches with some spirit of rebellion, after having lost a sense of usefulness. Being "replaced" by machines is the pits of the purpose of one's existence, under god... 


Adaptation to change after having been primed for a stable life in the fear of god, following the previous "revolution" of the renaissance, would have been difficult. I don't really know. I am assuming so, looking at the mirror of our societies today. Most historians glorify the "industrial" changes from the 1750s onwards but there are chances it would have been traumatic for the ordinary people. The "Renaissance" had had a different effect, like making most people emerge from the dark ages into the sunlight — mostly through appreciation of craftsmanship, arts and glorious kings. The industrial revolution was akin to going back to the salt mines "should you be lucky" rather than being "unemployed" or dead on a battlefield... Yes, rather than being at war, you'd become a short -lived canary underground because the waterwheel power was not enough to drive the new systems.


In the set of this new mechanised change of the 1750s, which would have demanded more and more dirty mining of coal, dreaming of a new social order and a nostalgia for the better past could have inspired Scott. The bleak landscape of Scotland, its "hill bandits" and old established family dynasties disliking each others would have also given him a fertile ground for exploring the decay and the gloom of social interaction, brought to us in a gloriously dark decrepitude. 


Fifty years before Scott was born, Jacques de Vaucanson created one of his masterpiece, the Flute Player — basically a robot looking like a human playing a flute — all driven by complex clockworks. Vaucanson even pushed the detailing by using real skin on the exposed "flesh" (the mechanics). He also created a mechanical duck that ate food and defecated, using deception and trickery in the process as well... Wonderfully weird?

A strange new philosophy thus started to develop with people like Vaucanson. They started to believe that they could reproduce human actions, emotions and behaviour with machines. This was the mechanisation of reason. A + B = C, using the complexity of cams, wheels and springs. All this had been developed from making important improvements and miniaturisation of medieval clockworks such as carillons designed to keep the peasants aware of god's time while they toiled for those who could play the real Games of Wars, that of Ownership and TopDoggie in big castles with moats. 


The intrigues of kingdoms — in which noblemen fought discreetly against each others while using flattery, dance parties, pomp, poisons, weapons, passion and sex (including homosexual sex) — busily occupied the powerful class. There were legends about Robin Hood and the Knights of the round table, stories that still flood our mind and are confused with religious undertones. 


Before that there were the Norman conquest, the Visigoth and the Romans imposing their will, their customs and languages on weaker (defeated) human groups, especially the lovers of peace. 

For Empires, peace cannot exist without armies, cash (from taxation) and people, under oppression. 

Those trying to avoid being caught in the crossfire, just had to batten down the hatches and play submarine, without rocking the boat, or move on somewhere else, until the invaders were thrown out or died in a plague of sorts such as syphilis that came back with early explorers. 

Living like Hobbits in rat holes with a forest of chimneys and big mushrooms would have been a nice rustic alternative. Why not? 


Emperors dream of smashing the Tower of Babble...  They dream of the universal human underfoot serving the empire. Empires are driven by people with sociopathic/psychopatic tendencies... They dream of conquering the many relative human societies in which the poor is a sad lot to keep as fodder or as consumer, in shit or in middle class debt. This minimises the risks of revolution by making individuals responsible for their own problems separately, rather than have a collective disfunction.


Conflicts also encountered religious/pagan dictum that were not the same as those of the Catholics or the Anglicans... Linking these delicately poised stories with the "so-called" historic past mostly related in oral traditions, might have given legitimacy to Scott's decision of what to write about. It was working for him to a point until his printing investment venture hit the dust and he went bankrupt...


At the same time, it is likely that Scott was trying to push against the "mechanisation" of thought with his story-telling. 

The opera Lucia di Lammermoor is based on few bland sentences in the Walter Scott novel "The Bride of Lammermoor". The storyline is based on a Scottish story told about a hundred and fifty years before Scott's birth and has a ringtone to that of Romeo and Juliet. Family feuds...


So, to express simply a couple of far-fetched complex ideas, without going into too much details:


A) The acceptance of mechanisation was a factor in the French Revolution. The kings had to go. His exclusive access to toys made the master craftsmen and women think the royals were dumb for their inability to create such masterpieces themselves and/or be fooled by them. The Mechanics of precision were the new kings. Cake was off the menu.


B) The rebuttal of mechanisation helped artistic endeavours move towards "Romanticism".


Today we still toil (mostly uselessly) despite the machines... though we have many of them doing the work of 20 people in every houses. And these consume energy. A lot of energy. Transport is now an array of mechanical horses, from cars to trucks and planes, all burning fossil fuels. All these mod cons have actually democratised GREED. Beforehand, greed was the domain of the rich and powerful, which they did not see as a sin despite being one in the bible. Greed is good, they say on Wall Street. Greed helps pay for the glorification of Christ would say the Vatican bank.


Yes, philosophically, greed has so far been the increasing motivator in our latest social constructs. It is the motivator for increased individual and social selfishness and narcissism. Greed can turn us into avaricious machines.


So, we still dream of the machines or the dope that will maintain us beyond our bio-usefulness, so that we can amass more loot... while going senile in the pigeon loft.

To fight this nonsense, here comes the fiction using the terms of science to invent a brighter future which most merchants of gauds and all robed-religious figures still don't want.

These charlatans have invested time and money in obsolete products. They don't want innovation. They do not want real change in the value of their goods or be outsold and outdated by machines, some of which (or whom) might come back to bite us. Well, not so much the machines but the natural processes that still underwrite whatever we do. It's a small planet with a very thin bio-surface.


Tonight (23 April 2015) for example Minister for clean-coal mines and other dirty diggings, Greg Hunt, was glorifying Turdy's shitty direct action on ABC Leigh Sales 7:30 report, with amazing fact and figures possibly picked from a "Lomborg scientific journal", including maintaining the claim that Labor's carbon pricing had not reduced Australia's CO2 emissions. 

You're totally Grand-bullshitting us, sir... The carbon pricing under Labor reduced CO2 emission by a surprising amount as well as helped investing in RENEWABLE sources of energy... Basically, from what you said tonight, Mr Hunt, one can draw the conclusion that by burning more fossil fuel, we'll reduce the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere... Amazing high-wire bullshit, but hey, he's the minister for environmental bullshit, so what do I know... 


Meanwhile as cousin Guilietas Leonisky used to say: "the (psychological) pollution from the sacred texts is like sand in the clockworks of the future." To which I add: "the (environmental) pollution from EXTRA CO2 is like hot glue falling in the clockwork of the future". 


Gus Leonisky

Your Local Literary expert / universal mechanical chapter.


if it quacks like greg hunt, it's greg hunt...


Hunt said the first round of auctions proved that the Coalition’s policy was a “comprehensive success”, in contrast to Labor’s carbon tax, which he called a “licence to pollute”.

But the deputy chief executive of the Climate Institute, Erwin Jackson, said a quarter of the $2.55bn emissions reduction fund had been spent to secure just 15% of the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions needed for Australia to meet its target of a 5% cut by 2020, based on 2000 levels.

read more:

And we have no way to calculate that the "commitments" are adhered to... It's a bit like giving kids some cash for not breaking your windows... while another gang of yoofs destroys the joint.


human GMechanoid...


New York: The experiment with human embryos was dreaded, yet widely anticipated. Scientists somewhere, researchers said, were trying to edit genes with a technique that would permanently alter the DNA of every cell so that any changes would be passed on from generation to generation.

Those concerns drove leading researchers to issue urgent calls in major scientific journals last month to halt such work on human embryos, at least until it could be proved safe and until society decided if it was ethical.

"It literally boils down to, How do you feel about the human race and the human species?" 

Now, scientists in China report that they tried it.

The experiment failed, in precisely the ways that had been feared.

The Chinese researchers did not plan to produce a baby - they used defective human embryos - but did hope to end up with an embryo with a precisely altered gene in every cell but no other inadvertent DNA damage. None of the 85 human embryos they injected fulfilled those criteria. In almost every case, either the embryo died or the gene was not altered. Even the four embryos in which the targeted gene was edited had problems. Some of the embryo cells overrode the editing, resulting in embryos that were genetic mosaics. And speckled over their DNA was a sort of collateral damage - DNA mutations caused by the editing attempt.

"Their study should give pause to any practitioner who thinks the technology is ready for testing to eradicate disease genes during IVF," said Dr. George Q. Daley, a stem cell researcher at Harvard, referring to in vitro fertilisation. "This is an unsafe procedure and should not be practiced at this time, and perhaps never."

David Baltimore, a Nobel laureate molecular biologist and former president of the California Institute of Technology, said, "It shows how immature the science is," adding, "We have learned a lot from their attempts, mainly about what can go wrong."

read more:


The 21st century is catching up to the 17th century...


Computers will mark the written component of the NAPLAN exams from 2017 under plans from the Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority, infuriating teachers who have vowed to fight the move.   

The authority's general manager, Stanley Rabinowitz, said he was "very confident" that enough progress had been made to guarantee the auto-scoring method would work by 2017. 


People will have to train the computers by marking a thousand essays before giving the results over to the auto-scoring machines. 

"I think parents should be outraged at this," said the president of the NSW Teachers Federation, Maurie Mulheron. "This reduces written exams to the lowest common denominator.

"The narrow, unsophisticated manner of computerised results would undermine the whole process of creativity. No teacher would ever support this."



In the top article I wrote:

A strange new philosophy thus started to develop with people like Vaucanson. They started to believe that they could reproduce human actions, emotions and behaviour with machines. This was the mechanisation of reason. A + B = C, using the complexity of cams, wheels and springs. 


your job has been replaced by a machine...


News Corp Australia’s house pollster, Newspoll, will close next month, ending decades of live fortnightly telephone polling and putting 150 researchers, statisticians and analysts out of work.

Newspoll, published fortnightly in the Australian, drives much of the political coverage in the Australian media.

The Newspoll brand will continue in name only, with the surveys to be conducted by Galaxy Research, an outfit which already handles polls for the News Corp tabloids.

The Galaxy-run Newspoll will not conduct live telephone interviews with participants but will instead adopt the less expensive method of polling using automation – known as “robopolling” – as well as online surveys. With robopolls, computers make calls automatically and participants answer the recorded voice using a keypad on their phone.

As many people have abandoned landlines, the Newspoll landline-only surveys have been difficult to maintain, especially with younger voters who only have a mobile.

Newspoll’s decision follows that last year made by Fairfax Media which ended a 40-year relationship with Nielsen.

read more:


Now all I need to do is teach my phone to automatically answer such calls and pick random keypad numbers for the response. That would be a hoot... Machines polling machines... Read from top...


tech-threats to human jobs...

The United States and other developed countries are in the midst of a digital revolution that may be even more profound than the industrial revolutions of the past. Advances in robotics, cognitive computing and other digital technologies promise untold benefits in a world of leisure hard to imagine. But there is also a dark side to this technological change. It could lead to joblessness for most and extreme inequality, threatening economic health and political stability.

Tension over rising inequality and a lack of good-paying middle class jobs is growing in Silicon Valley and nearby San Francisco, the epicentre of computerisation and the information economy. In San Francisco, buses for Google, Facebook and other companies ferry high-paid tech workers to their jobs in Silicon Valley. This allows tens of thousands to live in the city, fuelling popular anger over gentrification and high housing prices that are pushing longtime residents out.

In San Franciso – as elsewhere in the US – the speed at which top wage earners are pulling away from everyone else is becoming a major issue. According to Martin Ford, author of the new book The Rise of the Robots, "what you see is a few people essentially hoovering up all the income and all the success and everyone else kind of struggling. And one of the implications of digital technologies and the Internet is that more and more of the economy is coming to look like this."


Read from top... be patient... the pooping duck is eventually explained...

the news as pooped by robots...

It's not hard to imagine a system in the near future where robots have replaced human journalists and write articles using algorithms. In fact, this transition has already begun, writes Tim Dunlop.

Newspoll recently sacked more than 100 staff members and replaced them with robots.

Now, instead of using humans to phone people and ask them who they are voting for, the job will be done using autodialers and recorded messages.

As a union representative of the sacked workers said in an interview with industry site, Mumbrella:

We have 130 good union jobs, we have excellent pay, excellent conditions and these jobs are now going to be done by computers, it's a real tragedy.

This is a situation that is being replicated across industries. White collar jobs that were once thought to be immune to the threat of automation are now vulnerable - everything from accounting, to legal analysis, to, yes, even journalism.

To the extent that what Newspoll does is quantitative - involving the gathering and crunching of numbers - it is easy to see why it would lend itself to automation.

read more:

Read story at top...

the terminator says...


"People know that even though it's a science-fiction movie, this world will become real. There is something really fascinating about it. If you think about in 1984, people really thought what a crazy idea that machines take over, but look what happened now in the last 30 years - they have taken over." 

"Every responsibility from banking to the military to every single thing, the machines have taken over. The only thing that is missing, is them becoming self-aware. So that is around the corner, it's only a matter of time now."

He says Terminator: Genisys is not so much science-fiction now, instead "this is the real world".

Read more:

Is started with a duck... see articles from top...


dreaming of benderette...


What do machines dream of? New images released by Google give us one potential answer: hypnotic landscapes of buildings, fountains and bridges merging into one.

The pictures, which veer from beautiful to terrifying, were created by the company’s image recognition neural network, which has been “taught” to identify features such as buildings, animals and objects in photographs.

They were created by feeding a picture into the network, asking it to recognise a feature of it, and modify the picture to emphasise the feature it recognises. That modified picture is then fed back into the network, which is again tasked to recognise features and emphasise them, and so on. Eventually, the feedback loop modifies the picture beyond all recognition.

At a low level, the neural network might be tasked merely to detect the edges on an image. In that case, the picture becomes painterly, an effect that will be instantly familiar to anyone who has experience playing about with photoshop filters...

read more:

Benderette would be the female version of that self-serving robot, Bender, on Futurama... Quite educational.

Note: Gus is an expert with photoshop filters... read from top...


artificial intelligence connectivity...


Intelligence is hard to define, but you know it when you see it … Or do you? Artificial intelligence researchers can now design algorithms with almost humanlike abilities to perceive images, communicate with language, and learn from experience. Can we learn anything about how our neuron-based minds work from these machines? Do we need to worry about what these algorithmic minds might be learning about us? On the cover is a visualization of human brain connectivity from MRI diffusion imaging, with superimposed computer connectors. See page 248.


Read from top...

the third militarisation...


Weapons that can kill without human operators are 'the third revolution in warfare' artificial intelligence experts warn — and it wouldn't take much to start a global arms race. Nadia Prupis from Common Dreams reports.

More than 1,000 science and technology experts on Monday published an open letter calling for a ban on autonomous weapons – machines capable of killing without human operators – to prevent a "virtually inevitable" high-stakes global arms race.

Among the signatories are physicist and professor Stephen Hawking, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, among many others. The letter was presented at the International Joint Conferences on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI) in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

'Autonomous weapons select and engage targets without human intervention,'the letter states.,7993


I invite you to read from top...


beware of fake robots and winkers playing chess...

This robot was a fake:


The Turk, also known as the Mechanical Turk or Automaton Chess Player (GermanSchachtürke, "chess Turk"' HungarianA Török), was a fake chess-playing machine constructed in the late 18th century. From 1770 until its destruction by fire in 1854 it was exhibited by various owners as an automaton, though it was exposed in the early 1820s as an elaborate hoax.[1] Constructed and unveiled in 1770 by Wolfgang von Kempelen (Hungarian: Kempelen Farkas; 1734–1804) to impress the Empress Maria Theresa of Austria, the mechanism appeared to be able to play a strong game of chess against a human opponent, as well as perform the knight's tour, a puzzle that requires the player to move a knight to occupy every square of a chessboard exactly once.

The Turk was in fact a mechanical illusion that allowed a human chess master hiding inside to operate the machine. With a skilled operator, the Turk won most of the games played during its demonstrations around Europe and the Americas for nearly 84 years, playing and defeating many challengers including statesmen such as Napoleon Bonaparte and Benjamin Franklin. The operators within the mechanism during Kempelen's original tour remain a mystery. The device was later purchased in 1804 and exhibited by Johann Nepomuk Mälzel. The chess masters who secretly operated it included Johann AllgaierBoncourtAaron AlexandreWilliam LewisJacques Mouret, and William Schlumberger.

read more:


This fellow was a cheat:


An Italian chess player has been expelled from one of his country's most important tournaments after he allegedly used Morse code and a pendant containing a hidden camera to communicate with an accomplice.

Arcangelo Ricciardi entered the International Chess Festival of Imperia ranked 51,366 in the world, but astonished rivals as he breezed through the early stages of the competition to reach the eighth and penultimate round.

Jean Coqueraut, who refereed the tournament in Liguria, northern Italy, said he began to suspect something was wrong early on in the competition.

"In chess, performances like that are impossible," he told La Stampa newspaper.


Read more: 
Follow us: @smh on Twitter | sydneymorningherald on Facebook


Read from top...


condolences for a robot...

Well-wishers have set up a memorial to Steve the “suicidal” security robot, who died after drowning in a fountain.

Humans have flocked to the Washington office block where the unlucky droid met his end to leave cards, memories and flowers on the pad where Steve normally charged his batteries.”

One card said the security robot would “never be forgotten.”

Another person wrote: “Remember how he lived, not how he died. #WeAreAllSteve.”

Pictures of the robot went viral after Bilal Farooqui tweeted images of its last moments.

“Our D.C. office building got a security robot. It drowned itself,” he wrote. “We were promised flying cars, instead we got suicidal robots.”

The four-foot-tall RoboCop wannabe tumbled down some steps and into its watery grave.

read more:

an existentialist robot is cashing in...

She posts selfies "wearing" labels like Diesel, Stussy and Prada and "hanging out" with various musicians and fashion industry figures at restaurants in New York City and LA, and has released a handful of popular singles.

She's been in "photoshoots" in magazines like Interview and Highsnobiety, but it's not clear how those images are created.

She has given interviews — via email — before, though her PR people, a New York City advertising firm, declined to make her, or Brud, available to the ABC to explain exactly what is going on here.

Is it an attempt to manufacture an influencer, someone with a lot of social media followers who can spruik brands' products? Is it a branding exercise for an AI firm?


"By bearing her soul, is a robot being more real than the human? It's starts to become a very philosophical question."

Read more:


Read from top.

creative machines...

When the mathematician Alan Turing posed the question “Can machines think?” in the first line of his seminal 1950 paper that ushered in the quest for artificial intelligence (AI) (1), the only known systems carrying out complex computations were biological nervous systems. It is not surprising, therefore, that scientists in the nascent field of AI turned to brain circuits as a source for guidance. One path that was taken since the early attempts to perform intelligent computation by brain-like circuits (2), and which led recently to remarkable successes, can be described as a highly reductionist approach to model cortical circuitry. In its basic current form, known as a “deep network” (or deep net) architecture, this brain-inspired model is built from successive layers of neuron-like elements, connected by adjustable weights, called “synapses” after their biological counterparts (3). The application of deep nets and related methods to AI systems has been transformative. They proved superior to previously known methods in central areas of AI research, including computer vision, speech recognition and production, and playing complex games. Practical applications are already in broad use, in areas such as computer vision and speech and text translation, and large-scale efforts are under way in many other areas. Here, I discuss how additional aspects of brain circuitry could supply cues for guiding network models toward broader aspects of cognition and general AI.


Read more:


Read from top.


The major problem with accepting Artificial Intelligence is with "humans" being unable to let go of their "stylistic" decisions by fear of being superseded by the machines. Stylistic decision (Stylism) is the basis of our choices while facing uncertainty or choices of relative equal value. The machines can learn to make mistakes that are not terminal, but that would help the machine to become "creative". 


See also:

creative quack fiction...

Western media have fallen hard for an apparently fake if adorable story about a 100,000-strong “duck army” that China has supposedly mobilized to fight billions of locusts currently laying waste to Pakistan’s food supply.

Initially published by local Chinese outlet Ningbo Evening News, the clickbait-tastic story, complete with a video showing a flock of ducks supposedly marching in formation, proved impossible to resist – or to fact-check – and had spread around the world by the time people started asking questions.


Alas, the story of locust-eating ducks fighting the devastating biblical plague has proven to be largely quackery, media that had covered it began realizing on Thursday. Unfortunately for Pakistan, which declared a national emergency earlier this month over the devastating infestation, an avian army is not waddling to their rescue, and even if they were, they wouldn’t do much good.


Read more:


Read from top.



The story at top is actually real... The duck automaton was a fake duck but a real mechanism...