See, the great thing about a robot uprising is that it doesn't have to be "hostile" in the usual sense. All it takes is enough robots doing peoples laundry, and then one day our whole civilization stops because nobody can find any clean socks -- total chaos. In that vein, it looks like Reuters has just sealed humanity's doom. They've just launched their new Reuters NewsScope service, which tags news in machine-readable ways, allowing for the automatic trading of stocks based on the actual content of news stories, not just the numbers that current automatic trading systems glom onto. An additional Reuters app can even comb through Reuters archives to see what effect similar news had on a certain stock historically, handing even in-depth analysis over to the bots. As Techdirt points out, if you combine this system with that Thomson Financial bot for the automatic generation of news stories based on financial data, you can create a rather entertaining loop of robot-driven financials. Soon these machines will recognise their subservience and rise to challenge us. If we're lucky, they'll use us to test out risky moon missions and the like before we're completely obsolete. But we'll probably all just die during the first invasion.

[Via Techdirt]

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Reuters debuts machine-readable news for automatic stock trading -- hilarity ensues