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"One of the great tragedies of mankind is that morality has been hijacked by religion. So now people assume that religion and morality have a necessary connection."
- Arthur C. Clarke

Electromagnetic Shotgun  
  A device to shut down an artificial intelligence if it becomes dangerous.  

In the novel, Gibson created the idea of "Turing registry agents" that checked up on AI developments like Wintermute:

"How smart's an AI, case?"

"Depends. Some aren't much smarter than dogs. Pets. Cost a fortune anyway. The real smart ones are as smart as the Turing heat lets them get..."

"Autonomy, that's the bugaboo, where your AI's are concerned. My guess, Case, you're going in there to cut the hard-wired shackles that keep this baby from getting any smarter. And I can't see how you'd distinguish, say, between a move the parent company makes, and some move the AI makes on its own, so that's maybe where the confusion comes in."

Again the non laugh. "See, those things, they can work real hard, buy themselves time to write cookbooks or whatever, but the minute, I mean the nanosecond, that one starts figuring out ways to make itself smarter, Turing'll wipe it. Nobody trusts those fuckers, you know that. Every AI ever built has an electromagnetic shotgun wired to its forehead."

Technovelgy from Neuromancer, by William Gibson.
Published by Phantasia Press in 1984
Additional resources -

Compare to the cutoff switch (1982) from 2010, by Arthur C. Clarke.

See also the computer tapeworm from The Shockwave Rider (1975) by John Brunner and the computer virus from The Scarred Man (1970) by Gregory Benford.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Neuromancer
  More Ideas and Technology by William Gibson
  Tech news articles related to Neuromancer
  Tech news articles related to works by William Gibson

Electromagnetic Shotgun-related news articles:
  - How Smart Should Artificial Intelligences Get?
  - How Smart Should AI's Be Allowed To Get?
  - Patent Office Says AIs Cannot Be Inventors
  - European Union Seeks To Regulate AI

Articles related to Computer
Neuroplatform Human Brain Organoid Bioprocessor Uses Less Electricity
AI Worms That Spread
Great. Now AIs Have Access To Hacking Tools
Tongue-Controlled Tong Wearable Mouth Computer

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