The United Nations Will Take On ‘Killer Robots’ in 2017

Posted by on December 25, 2016 in Futurism & Inspiring Inventions, Sci-Tech, Technology with 0 Comments
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Are fears of AI turning into sinister killing machines, like Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character from the “Terminator” films, grounded in facts?
Credit: Warner Bros.

By Glenn McDonald | Live Science

Good news, fellow humans: The United Nations has decided to take on killer robots.

At the international Convention on Conventional Weapons in Geneva, 123 participating nations voted to initiate official discussions on the danger of lethal autonomous weapons systems. That’s the emerging designation for so-called “killer robots” — weapons controlled by artificial intelligence that can target and strike without human intervention.


The agreement is the latest development in a growing movement calling for an preemptive ban on weaponized A.I. and deadly autonomous weapons. Last year, a coalition of more than 1,000 scientists and industry leaders, including Elon Musk and representatives of Google and Microsoft, signed an official letter to the United Nations demanding action.

The UN decision is significant in that it calls for formal discussions on the issue in 2017. In high-level international deliberations, the move from “informal” to “formal” represents a real step forward, said Stephen Goose, arms director of Human Rights Watch and a co-founder of the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots.

“In essence, they decided to move from the talk shop phase to the action phase, where they are expected to produce a concrete outcome,” Goose said in an email exchange with Seeker.

RELATED: Killer Machines and Sex Robots: Unraveling the Ethics of A.I.

It’s widely acknowledged that military agencies around the world are already developing lethal autonomous weapons. In August, Chinese officials disclosed that the country is exploring the use of A.I. and automation in its next generation of cruise missiles.

“China’s plans for weapons and artificial intelligence may be terrifying, but no more terrifying than similar efforts by the U.S., Russia, Israel, and others,” Goose said. “The U.S. is farther along in this field than any other nation. Most advanced militaries are pursuing ever-greater autonomy in weapons. Killer robots would come in all sizes and shapes, including deadly miniaturized versions that could attack in huge swarms, and would operate from the air, from the ground, from the sea, and underwater.”

The core issue in regard to these weapons systems concerns human agency, Goose said.

“The key thing distinguishing a fully autonomous weapon from an ordinary conventional weapon, or even a semi-autonomous weapon like a drone, is that a human would no longer be deciding what or whom to target and when to pull the trigger,” he said.

“The weapon system itself, using artificial intelligence and sensors, would make those critical battlefield determinations. This would change the very nature of warfare, and not for the betterment of humankind.”

READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE…

Tags: , , ,

Subscribe

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe now to receive more just like it.

Subscribe via RSS FeedConnect on YouTube

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

FAIR USE NOTICE. Many of the stories on this site contain copyrighted material whose use has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making this material available in an effort to advance the understanding of environmental issues, human rights, economic and political democracy, and issues of social justice. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of the copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law which contains a list of the various purposes for which the reproduction of a particular work may be considered fair, such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. If you wish to use such copyrighted material for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use'...you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. And, if you are a copyright owner who wishes to have your content removed, let us know via the "Contact Us" link at the top of the site, and we will promptly remove it.

The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Conscious Life News assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms.

Paid advertising on Conscious Life News may not represent the views and opinions of this website and its contributors. No endorsement of products and services advertised is either expressed or implied.
Top

Send this to friend