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Running head: BEHAVIORAL AUTOMATION 1

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Running head: BEHAVIORAL AUTOMATION 1

The Surveillance State of Behavioral Automation

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Introduction

Technologies have a significant impact on behavioral science. Genomics has dramatically grown over the past few years. Much of its growth can be attributed to the automatization of DNA sequencing. The “automatization of DNA sequencing” has been contributed by molecular biologists, computer scientists, and engineers’ combined efforts. The expansion of the knowledge of genomes has made the collections of transgenic animal strains possible. Not surprisingly, the scientific discoveries made on genetics and genomics give no adequate, comparable expansion to mutant animal’s brain functionality (Schaefer & Claridge-Chang, 2012). The basic understanding of a brain is the behavior it produces; hence automation of behavioral tests is being conducted. Molecular biologists, scientists, and engineers still take part in tackling this issue. Therefore, they are working to automize and digitize animal behavior experiments. This research paper shall examine the implications of these automized and digitized animal behavior. Moreover, it will assess obtaining the type of data required from these experiments. The paper handles neurogenetic systems for mice and flies; however, worms are also mentioned.

Throughput increase as a result of automation

Experimental throughput and phenotyping process are increasing as a result of the efforts in automatization. The use of activity monitors for screening circadian mutants has benefitted from the automation process (Winter & Schaefers, 2011). For example, activity monitoring of zebrafish found hundreds of drugs that impacted the rest and wake state. Also, hundreds of flies’ data were captured and analyzed due to the availability of cheap webcams. Therefore, social behaviors are better examined through automatization since it demands “a time-consuming eye scoring from a video”. Lack of automatization contributes to low throughput. There are more than seven action types of boxing and lunging, and aggressive flies. Therefore, the actions need to be captured through the information collected on their limb positions. Software is necessary to make the behavior accessible in a high throughput screening.

Automation Allows the Possibility of New Physiology Experiments

Usually, physiology is combined with larger animals’ behavior; however, automation leads to using physiology in smaller neurogenetic animals. Drosophila has a tiny size, and it has been a challenge to physiologists. However, virtual reality screens facilitate the fly walking and flight behavior to be examined “through pathophysiology and electrophysiology”; This allowed an increase in the responsiveness of motion-sensitive visual neurons. It showed a profound impact on sensory dynamics; Which led to the conclusion that no part of the brain is immune to the activity’s effects.

Another scenario is the worms (Crawley, 2008). In the first system, a ratiometric fluorescent signal was used to record a freely moving animal. However, the second system, the optogenetic physiological control, used automated tracking fitted with a projector for neural activity. Neural activation and inactivation operated on projectors with several color channels. These two systems used integrated search and transgenic interventions and optical systems. The main goal is to achieve the specificity of a single neuron for a freely moving animal.

Automated Observation for a Rodent Home Cage

Animal behavior is split into psychologists and ethologists. The psychologists provide for explicit laboratory experimentation while the ethologists emphasize detailed observation. It was hard for the ethologists to use traditional methods to understand brain Behaviour, and therefore the automation brings detailed and rich descriptions of behavior. For example, the mice were “inspected utilizing a videotape.” The results proved score actions such as walking and climbing, strain difference, and disease phenotypes (Goulding et al., 2008). Scoring by eye tends to be difficult since it is time-intensive and subjective. As a result, systems such as EthoVision track these movement patterns; This has made replacing human scorers possible. The techniques such as HomeCageScan, sniffing methods can detect posture and movement, rest and awake, rearing, and so on. Consequently, the software of the analysis methodology in quality and availability.

Nonetheless, there are limitations to this video tracking method. For instance, it requires not obstructed images; This makes it impossible to explore the variety of enrichment the home cage offers. Therefore, the solution to this is to have alternate systems that detect floor movements, for example, LABORAS (Crabbe et al., 1999). The main advantage is that they have restrictions depending on the complex environment. Also, lactometers and photo beams can be used to detect eating and other general movements.

In summary, automation has widespread use in increasing throughput and has a diverse effect on behavioral neuroscience. Automation transforms physiology by making the conducted experiments accessible. Also, it integrates ethology-type observation with these psychology experiments. Automation provides clarity into two aspects; first, the socially housed animals in the experiments can be tracked and sorted; This allows for an efficient interpretation of the experiment’s clear conditions. The second aspect is that automation allows high-resolution motion capturing methods to give an automated classification. These two aspects are very for the behavioral patterns and increasing natural conditions.

References

Crabbe, J. C., Wahlsten, D., & Dudek, B. C. (1999). Genetics of mouse behavior: interactions with laboratory environment. Science, 284(5420), 1670–1672.

Crawley, J. N. (2008). Behavioral phenotyping strategies for mutant mice. Neuron, 57(6), 809–818.

Goulding, E. H., Schenk, A. K., Juneja, P., MacKay, A. W., Wade, J. M., & Tecott, L. H. (2008). A robust automated system elucidates mouse home cage behavioral structure. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 105(52), 20575–20582.

Schaefer, A. T., & Claridge-Chang, A. (2012). The surveillance state of behavioral automation. Current Opinion in Neurobiology, 22(1), 170–176.

Winter, Y., & Schaefers, A. T. U. (2011). A sorting system with automated gates permits individual operant experiments with mice from a social home cage. Journal of Neuroscience Methods, 196(2), 276–280.

ASPECTS OF SURVEILLANCE STATE

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Overview
Introduction
Democracy
Privacy
Cost
control
Laws and Regulations
State Powers
Liberty or Safety
Trade-offs
Outcome of Surveillance

Introduction
A surveillance state can be defined as a state whose goal is to have preventive, daily, and extensive surveillance. However, it does not experience serious backlash from some population.
This is because some people have no problem being surveilled since they like the idea that someone is paying attention (Heynen & van der Meulen, 2019)
Nonetheless, the discussion in this paper focuses on the dangerous aspect of a surveillance state.

Democracy
Surveillance is dangerous in a democratic country. A country considered to be democratic must seek consent from a large number of the population. The United States has various examples of circumstances that demonstrate the surveillance state; for instance, checkpoints have been rechristened as inspections.
This is done at a rate of thirty thousand times annually.
This means that the National Security Agency (NSA) has been spying on millions of Americans.
In 2010, Wall Street’s research revealed the FBI had many records of DNA of its American citizens.

PRIVACY
America has less state of surveillance than in China.
Therefore, life is still much better in America than in China.
This is because there is so much problem in the surveillance state in China.
However, the focus is not so much on how it knows about but on what it can do with what it knows.
The danger is not in the surveillance state violating the basic standards of privacy.

COST
On the contrary, the main problem is that surveillance state fuels is control.
The beauty of surveillance is that it provides a high level of everyday surveillance such that it lowers the cost of information (Qiang, 2019).
The low cost of information is a result of the fixed cost of putting the surveillance in place.
Consequently, the state can be tempted by such benefits surveillance brings.
The reason is that the cost of control is less since the information readily available.

CONTROL
Control, which is caused by the rise of surveillance, takes the form of laws and regulations.
Therefore, the low cost of control means that the political costs and resources of imposing new regulations and laws are greatly lowered.
Ideally, a decrease in the cost of something results in the user wanting more of it (Reidenberg, 2014).
Therefore, the more the state gets to know through surveillance, the more control it enforces.
The state has the power to do anything with the information it has gathered or the information it has seized from the databases of private parties databases. This means that private parties’ information is only secure up to the state or an order by the court.

LAWS AND REGULATIONS
Control, which is caused by the rise of surveillance, takes the form of laws and regulations.
Therefore, the low cost of control means that the political costs and resources of imposing new regulations and laws are greatly lowered. Ideally, a decrease in the cost of something results in the user wanting more of it (Reidenberg, 2014).
Therefore, the more the state gets to know through surveillance, the more control it enforces.
The state has the power to do anything with the information it has gathered or the information it has seized from the databases of private parties databases. This means that private parties’ information is only secure up to the state or an order by the court.

STATE POWERS
Therefore, the state powers exist within the matters of security.
The matters of security also require some surveillance.
The government is forced to push the button on surveillance due to various emerging issues today.
For example, the return of religion wars, the international travel low costs, and individual empowerment in the sense of social networks, car availability, and encryption.
These cases require more surveillance than what is deemed necessary

LIBERTY OR SAFETY
The popular statement by Franklin states, “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety”. He says that the individuals in need of temporary safety have to give up their essential liberty.
Franklin continues to say that such individuals do not deserve liberty or safety.
Therefore, this statement made by Franklin suggests that the level of surveillance that is being exercised is more than necessary.

TRADE-OFFS
However, the main lesson from Benjamin’s statement that security and surveillance is a matter of trade-offs.
Hence, as mentioned in the beginning, democracy is affected.
This is because the state makes this trade-off for everyone else.
We can view this to be an extension of more than the role that the state is expected to do.

OUTCOME OF SURVEILLANCE STATE
Hence, the outcome of surveillance is that the people must act as law-abiding and fear the state.
The people cannot go against surveillance since it would mean that they are non-law abiding despite not changing their behavior (McCoy, 2009).
They will face charges of violating laws that they did not know existed.

OUTCOME OF SURVEILLANCE STATE
Therefore, the state can push for surveillance by coining law-abiding in the new laws and regulations.
Since the cost of control is low, then the state will easily enforce these prohibitive laws.
Consequently, the level of surveillance will rise as the number of new laws and regulations are imposed.

References
Heynen, R., & van der Meulen, E. (2019). Making Surveillance States: Transnational Histories. University of Toronto Press.
McCoy, A. W. (2009). Policing America’s Empire: The United States, the Philippines, and the Rise of the Surveillance State. Univ of Wisconsin Press.
Qiang, X. (2019). The Road to Digital Unfreedom: President Xi’s Surveillance State. Journal of Democracy, 30(1), 53–67.
Reidenberg, J. R. (2014). The data surveillance state in the United States and Europe. Wake Forest Law Review. https://heinonline.org/hol-cgi-bin/get_pdf.cgi?handle=hein.journals/wflr49&section=21
Why the Surveillance State is Dangerous. (2018, June 10). https://www.econlib.org/archives/2018/06/why_the_surveil.html

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