ETHICS IN A WORLD OF ROBOTS - University of Alberta

ETHICS IN A WORLD OF ROBOTS - University of Alberta

medical ethics when all things are possible ETHICS IN A WORLD OF ROBOTS SINGULARITY AND ETHICAL ISSUES Even if a super-robot were to control all medical systems in the future, with unlimited possibilities to manipulate the human, so long as the word human applies, there must be the presumption of an ethical awareness, an available intentionality to express self meaningfully, and some sense of

legitimate choice. In effect, the human ceases to exist when these values are removed or compromised beyond recognition. So long as the statement x is better for humans has relevance, then, ethical evaluation will define the human. Even if we adopt Zadehs (1988) argument for fuzzy logic, we just have no means of relating to beings who do not exhibit these minimal elements. ETHICS IN A WORLD OF ROBOTS Ethical Reasoning is a contested area in current human existence, and just

about any area of medical procedure has ethical dilemmas. The literature on all aspects of futurism bristles with ethical challenges. The very definition of the human may be modified beyond our current perceptions. SOME SYSTEMIC ISSUES AND ETHICS NANOTECHNOLOGY AND THE ETHICS OF FORECASTING: David Sanford Horner

TRANSCENDING BIOLOGY: Ray Kurzweil THE HUMAN-NOT WELCOME IN THE FUTURE: William Joy ETHICAL ISSUES IN AI: Richard Mason UNPACKING THE ISSUES: NANOTECHNOLOGY: Horner nanomedicine devoted not merely to ameliorative medical treatment but to the improvement of human performance a forecast may only be properly made if it is made on the basis of sufficient knowledge,

experience and evidence if the outcomes are beyond our knowledge and control then we cant be held responsible for them. But it is a central plank of moral theory that moral agency and judgement must be immune to luck Ergo: the need for nano-ethics UNPACKING THE ISSUES TRANSCENDING BIOLOGY: Kurzweil human life will be irreversibly transformed.. Although neither utopian or dystopian, this epoch will transform the concepts that we rely on to give

meaning to our lives, from our business models to the cycle of human life, including death itself There will be no distinction, postSingularity, between human and machine or between physical and virtual reality UNPACKING THE ISSUES TRANSCENDING BIOLOGY: Kurzweil six historical epochs that are driven, in a law-like manner (the law of accelerating returns), by the exponential growth of information and

technology a theory of technological evolution as justification of the shape of future human society UNPACKING THE ISSUES THE HUMAN-NOT WELCOME IN THE FUTURE: William Joy genetic engineering, robotics, and nanotechnology (GNR)will extinguish human beings as we now know them Joys big fish eat little fish argument

quotes robotics pioneer Hans Moravec: Biological species almost never survive encounters with superior competitors. UNPACKING THE ISSUES THE HUMAN-NOT WELCOME IN THE FUTURE self-replication amplifies the danger of GNR: A bomb is blown up only oncebut one bot can become many, and quickly get out of control. 21st century technologies are widely within the reach of individuals or small groups knowledge alone will enable the use of them, I.E. knowledge-enabled mass destruction (KMD).

we are on the cusp of the further perfection of extreme evil UNPACKING THE ISSUES THE HUMAN-NOT WELCOME IN THE FUTURE It seems far more likely that a robotic existence would not be like a human one in any sense that we understand, that the robots would in no sense be our children, that on this path our humanity may well be lost. this is the first moment in the history of our planet when any species by its voluntary actions has become a danger to itself.

The only realistic alternative I see is relinquishment: to limit development of the technologies that are too dangerous, by limiting our pursuit of certain kinds of knowledge. UNPACKING THE ISSUES ETHICAL ISSUES IN AI: Richard Mason Fundamental assumption: [e]very aspect of learning or any other feature of intelligence can in principle be so precisely described that a machine can be made to simulate it. (McCarthy, 1956)

Approaches based on this assumption are called symbolic or symbol-processing AI. UNPACKING THE ISSUES ETHICAL ISSUES IN AI: Richard Mason Wiener observed: It has long been clear to me that the modern ultra-rapid computing machine was in principle an ideal central nervous system to an apparatus for automatic controlthis new development has unbounded possibilities for good and evil. Physically they will be silicon based rather than carbon based; but, they will be able to think, feel, have moods,

be emotional, interact socially with others, draw on common sense, and have a soul. Thus, Al-based systems, will become the next stage in the evolution of life, emerge as our successors, and create a future society populated and governed by computers UNPACKING THE ISSUES ETHICAL ISSUES IN AI: Richard Mason the question of granting personhood to an AI machine or robot depends on where the line is drawn between persons and inanimate objects The overarching criterion is displaying

some from of cognitive capacitybeing conscious, having perceptions, feeling sensations UNPACKING THE ISSUES ETHICAL ISSUES IN AI: Richard Mason Turing also predicted at mid-century that in about fifty years time, it will be possible to programme computers to make them play the imitation game so well that an average interrogator will not have more than a seventy percent

chance of making the right identification after five minutes questioning. He concluded, We may hope that machines will eventually compete with men in all purely intellectual fields. UNPACKING THE ISSUES ETHICAL ISSUES IN AI: Richard Mason While the possibility of a machine being granted moral status is the most compelling ethical issue raised by AI, there are others, determined largely by the uses to which AI programs are actually put. These ethical considerations have evolved as AI research

and development has progressed. AI programs form relationships with other entities. They are used, for example, to advise human users, make decisions, and in the case of intelligent software agents to chat with people, search for information, look for news, find jobs, and shop for goods and locate the best prices. Their role in these relationships engenders moral responsibility. BIBLIOGRAPHY Grunwald, Armin. Nanotechnology-A New Field of Ethical Inquiry? Science and Engineering Ethics 11 (2):187-201.

Horner, D.S., 2007a. Forecasting Ethics and the Ethics of Forecasting: the case of Nanotechnology. In: T.W. Bynum, K. Murata, and S. Rogerson, eds. Globalisation: Bridging the Global Nature of Information and Communication Technology and the Local Nature of Human Beings. ETHICOMP 2007, Vol.1. Meiji University, Tokyo, Japan 27 -29 March 2007. Tokyo: Global e-SCM Research Centre, Meiji University, pp. 257-267. BIBLIOGRAPHY Joy, William. 2000. The future doesnt need us. Wired Magazine.

Kurzweil, Ray. 2005. The Singularity is near: when humans transcend biology. London: Duckworth. Mason, Brian. 2004. Ethical Issues in Artificial Intelligence 0642#mc0473 Zadeh, L.A. 1988.Fuzzy Logic. Computer, Vol. 21, #4, 83-93 CONTACT INFORMATION Dr. Earle Waugh

Centre for the Cross-Cultural Study of Health and Healing Department of Family Medicine University of Alberta 901 College Plaza Edmonton, AB T6G 2C8 Ph: 780 492-6424 Email: [email protected]

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