Why are so many AI researchers so worried about lethal autonomous weapons? What makes autonomous weapons so much worse than any other weapons we have today? And why is it so hard for countries to come to a consensus about autonomous weapons? Not surprisingly, the short answer is: it's complicated. In this month's podcast, Ariel spoke with experts from a variety of perspectives on the current status of LAWS, where we are headed, and the feasibility of banning these weapons. Guests include ex-Pentagon advisor Paul Scharre (3:40), artificial intelligence professor Toby Walsh (40:51), Article 36 founder Richard Moyes (53:30), Campaign to Stop Killer Robots founders Mary Wareham and Bonnie Docherty (1:03:38), and ethicist and co-founder of the International Committee for Robot Arms Control, Peter Asaro (1:32:39). You can listen to the podcast above, and read the full transcript below. You can check out previous podcasts on SoundCloud, iTunes, GooglePlay, and Stitcher. If you work with ...
The cyberspace and the development of new technologies, especially intelligent systems using artificial intelligence, present enormous challenges to computer professionals, data scientists, managers and policy makers. There is a need to address professional responsibility, ethical, legal, societal, and policy issues. This paper presents problems and issues relevant to computer professionals and decision makers and suggests a curriculum for a course on ethics, law and policy. Such a course will create awareness of the ethics issues involved in building and using software and artificial intelligence.
Government officials say autonomous vehicles will make transportation safer, more accessible, more efficient and cleaner and last week, the Department of Transportation released guidelines for the testing and deployment of automated vehicles, which detail how the vehicles should perform, and include a model for state policies. Self-driving vehicles are just the tip of the autonomous revolution. In 2016, autonomous robot doctors perform surgery; algorithms invest your money; robocops patrol shopping malls; and if you end up in hospital, a computer system can determine how quickly you get treated. Many decisions made by autonomous machines have moral implications -- yet little is determined about what ethics machines follow, or who decides what those ethical assumptions should be. In Florida in May, Joshua Brown died when an autopilot system did not recognize a tractor-trailer turning in front of his Tesla Model S and his car plowed into it -- the first fatality involving an autonomous vehicle.
Both the ethics of autonomous systems and the problems of their technical implementation have by now been studied in some detail. Less attention has been given to the areas in which these two separate concerns meet. This paper, written by both philosophers and engineers of autonomous systems, addresses a number of issues in machine ethics that are located at precisely the intersection between ethics and engineering. We first discuss the main challenges which, in our view, machine ethics posses to moral philosophy. We them consider different approaches towards the conceptual design of autonomous systems and their implications on the ethics implementation in such systems. Then we examine problematic areas regarding the specification and verification of ethical behavior in autonomous systems, particularly with a view towards the requirements of future legislation. We discuss transparency and accountability issues that will be crucial for any future wide deployment of autonomous systems in society. Finally we consider the, often overlooked, possibility of intentional misuse of AI systems and the possible dangers arising out of deliberately unethical design, implementation, and use of autonomous robots.