Sharing Our Humanity with Robots What Does It Mean To Be Human?

What does it mean to be human? Is it a simple biological definition, or does the concept involve specific values and attitudes? Beyond mere philosophical questioning, this article aims at deepening our understanding of what makes us human from a specific viewpoint: that of humans’ interaction with robots. Although most people still consider this issue…

Why We Need Better Ethics for Emerging Technologies

Technological revolutions are dissected into three stages: the introduction stage, the permeation stage, and the power stage. The information revolution is a primary example of this tripartite model. A hypothesis about ethics is proposed, namely, ethical problems increase as technological revolutions progress toward and into the power stage. Genetic technology, nanotechnology, and neurotechnology are good…

The responsibility gap: Ascribing responsibility for the actions of learning automata

Traditionally, the manufacturer/operator of a machine is held (morally and legally) responsible for the consequences of its operation. Autonomous, learning machines, based on neural networks, genetic algorithms and agent architectures, create a new situation wherein the manufacturer/operator of the machine is in principle not capable of predicting the future machine behaviour anymore, and thus cannot…