Killer AI Ethics?

Robotics: Ethics of artificial intelligence

Interesting article in– amazingly enough NATURE.
http://www.nature.com/news/robotics-ethics-of-artificial-intelligence-1.17611

The artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics communities face an important ethical decision: whether to support or oppose the development of lethal autonomous weapons systems (LAWS).

Technologies have reached a point at which the deployment of such systems is — practically if not legally — feasible within years, not decades. The stakes are high: LAWS have been described as the third revolution in warfare, after gunpowder and nuclear arms.

Autonomous weapons systems select and engage targets without human intervention; they become lethal when those targets include humans. LAWS might include, for example, armed quadcopters that can search for and eliminate enemy combatants in a city, but do not include cruise missiles or remotely piloted drones for which humans make all targeting decisions.

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BAE Systems’ Taranis drone has autonomous elements, but relies on humans for combat decisions.