Digital technologies have become part of our everyday lives and are increasingly acting as intermediaries in our workplaces and personal relationships or even substituting them. The Internet of things, social networks, programs that learn by interacting with humans, assistive and companion robots, computer games with a purpose, serious games for social impact, roboadvisors, webs that offer digital immortality… These tools can, in a short time, modify the job market, flip someone's reputation, transform a district, change our relationships --not just at work, but also within our families and close contacts-- or extend what a person leaves behind after dying, which now includes a digital footprint. The growing interaction with'intelligent' machines is not just a further step in the social transformation that started with the industrial revolution. Although these new information technologies do also free humans from repetitive tasks and provide them with more time to spend in creative and enjoyable ways, the difference is that they enter domains previously considered to be exclusive of humans, such as decision-making, emotions and social relationships, which may compromise human values, as well as decisively shape society and our way of life. This poses a series of ethical questions that were not relevant for other types of machines and about which we have no previous experience, nor can we reliably predict how they will ultimately influence the evolution of humankind.
Mar-4-2021, 16:35:53 GMT