Speed Reads


The military wants to teach robots morality

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Do androids dream of electric sheep? Or, more to the point, do they know the difference between right and wrong?

That's the question the U.S. military is hoping to tackle, as it will hand out $7.5 million in grants over the next five years to researchers tasked with defining human morality, and then trying to instill it in autonomous robots.

"We are playing catch-up trying to figure out the ethical and legal implications" of rapidly-evolving autonomous technologies, Paul Bello, from the Office of Naval Research, told Defense One. "We do not want to be caught similarly flat-footed in any kind of military domain where lives are at stake."

In related news, the United Nations is hosting a summit on the possibility of killer robots. I'd like to go on record now as saying I, for one, welcome our new deadly, moral robot overlords.