Killer Robots as cultural techniques

In October 2012 a group of non-governmental organizations formed a Campaign to Stop Killer Robots. The aim of this campaign was to preemptively ban fully autonomous weapons capable of selecting and engaging targets without human intervention. The campaign gained momentum swiftly, leading to different legal and political discussions and decision-makings. In this article, we use…

Robot Caregivers: Harbingers of Expanded Freedom for All?

As we near a time when robots may serve a vital function by becoming caregivers, it is important to examine the ethical implications of this development. By applying the capabilities approach as a guide to both the design and use of robot caregivers, we hope that this will maximize opportunities to preserve or expand freedom…

Robot Caregivers: Harbingers of Expanded Freedom for All?

As we near a time when robots may serve a vital function by becoming caregivers, it is important to examine the ethical implications of this development. By applying the capabilities approach as a guide to both the design and use of robot caregivers, we hope that this will maximize opportunities to preserve or expand freedom…

Philosophy and Computers

At this early stage in the development of a philosophical machine ethics, already a wide range of theoretical positions have been staked out. There are machine ethics utilitarians, and of course proponents of approaches following Kant, Ross, and various virtue theorists, too. Further categorization yields top-down, bottom-up, and hybrid approaches. A consideration of the logic…

A Prospective Framework for the Design of Ideal Artificial Moral Agents: Insights from the Science of Heroism in Humans

The growing field of machine morality has becoming increasingly concerned with how to develop artificial moral agents. However, there is little consensus on what constitutes an ideal moral agent let alone an artificial one. Leveraging a recent account of heroism in humans, the aim of this paper is to provide a prospective framework for conceptualizing,…

Robotik im Kontext von Recht und Moral | Hilgendorf | Nomos Verlagsgesellschaft

Robotische Systeme bahnen sich beständig Ihren Weg in die verschiedenen Bereiche menschlichen Lebens. Der Einsatz dieser Maschinen ist längst nicht mehr auf den industriellen Bereich beschränkt. Vielfältige Anwendungsmöglichkeiten bieten auch der militärische, medizinische und häusliche Bereich. Die Allgegenwärtigkeit dieser Technologie prägt in zunehmendem Maße unseren Alltag. Das Werk „Robotik im Kontext von Recht und Moral“…

On the anticipation of ethical conflicts between humans and robots in Japanese mangas

The following contribution examines the influence of mangas and animes on the social perception and cultural understanding of robots in Japan. Part of it is the narrow interaction between pop culture and Japanese robotics: Some examples shall serve to illustrate spill-over effects between popular robot stories and the recent development of robot technologies in Japan.…

Killer Robots

The United States Army's Future Combat Systems Project, which aims to manufacture a robot army that will be ready for deployment by 2012, is only the latest and most dramatic example of military interest in the use of artificially intelligent systems in modern warfare. This paper considers the ethics of the decision to send artificially…

Twenty Seconds to Comply: Autonomous Weapon Systems and the Recognition of Surrender

The United States Department of Defense defines autonomous weapons as weapon systems that, once activated, can select and engage targets without further intervention by a human operator. Autonomous weapon systems are widely predicted to be the future of war fighting, at least in the armed forces of highly industrialized nations. Consequently, there is now a…

Robot ethics: A view from the philosophy of science

Robot ethics is a branch of applied ethics which endeavours to isolate and analyse ethical issues arising in connection with present and prospective uses of robots. These issues span human autonomy protection and promotion, moral responsibility and liability, privacy, fair access to technological resources, social and cultural discrimination, in addition to the ethical dimensions of…

Robots and responsibility from a legal perspective

This paper considers how legal theory, or jurisprudence, might be applied to robots. This is done with the intention of determining what concepts and approaches to robot ethics might be gained from taking a legal perspective. In many cases, legal theory is suggestive of possible approaches to problems that will require further work to evaluate.…

Applied Professional Ethics for the Reluctant Roboticist

Since robots are designed to interact with humans, robotics applications always have ethical implications. Until recent decades, most robotics applications were of an industrial nature and therefore far removed from close interactions with people for safety reasons. In that milieu, the ethical impacts of robots on human relations were more subtle and could be mostly…

Contemporary Governance Architecture Regarding Robotics Technologies: An Assessment

Even a cursory review of the contemporary governance architecture regarding military technological innovation generally reveals a disturbing lack of consensus regarding the necessity for governance and methodologies to be utilized to achieve it. Innovations, adaptations, and uses in the areas of nanotechnology, bio-science, information science, cognitive technologies - referred to generally as NBIC - and…

Ethical Trust in the Context of Robot-Assisted Surgery

Robot Surgery began as a general practice in the United States in 2000, when the robotic da Vinci Surgical System was approved for use in hospitals by the FDA. Recently there have been some questions regarding the safety record of these machines and their benefits relative to their expense. Should we as patients and caregivers…

Machine morality: Bottom-up and top-down approaches for modelling human moral faculties

The implementation of moral decision making abilities in artificial intelligence (AI) is a natural and necessary extension to the social mechanisms of autonomous software agents and robots. Engineers exploring design strategies for systems sensitive to moral considerations in their choices and actions will need to determine what role ethical theory should play in defining control…