Could The Terminator Be Reality?

Big_dog_military_robotsPretty crazy news story out about high profile tech specialists and scientists signing a petition to ban autonomous weapons:

Robotics experts from around the world have called for a ban on autonomous weapons, warning that an artificial intelligence revolution in warfare could spell disaster for humanity.

The open letter, published by the Future of Life Institute, has been signed by hundreds of AI and robotics researchers, as well as high-profile persons in the science and tech world including Stephen Hawking, Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. Celebrated philosopher and cognitive scientist Daniel Dennett is among other endorsers who’ve added their names to the letter.

Damn. Those are some big names and some smart people. But what exactly are autonomous weapons?

The article also answers that:

“An autonomous weapons system is a weapon that, once activated or launched, decides to select its own targets and kills them without further human intervention,” explains Sharkey, who is a member of the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots — an organisation launched in 2013 that’s pushing for an international treaty to outlaw autonomous weapons. “Our aim is to prevent the kill decision being given to a machine.”

You mean giving a machine the ability to kill without human tethering is a bad idea?

I never would have guessed.

If these guys are signing a petition, we must be super close to creating autonomous killing machines. Probably some would argue that there would be less human casualties if robots went to war instead of humans, but they’d also make perfect assassins.

I’m with Hawking and the rest. Creating robot terminators is a very bad idea.

Can’t we all just get along and stop building new contraptions designed for the sole purpose of killing each other?

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23 Comments

  1. That’s what often saddens me about the human condition. We are capable of so much, yet despite all our capabilities and ingenuity, we seem to be unable to end this quest for finding new and interesting ways of killing our fellow human beings.

    Just think of how different our world would be if all that money was spent on ending hunger, disease and our dependence on fossil fuels.

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