As autonomous systems infiltrate everyday life, no longer should we just rely on technologists and engineers to make decisions about how these technologies should act. It’s important to bring together multiple viewpoints when considering the ethical implications of autonomous and intelligent systems (A/IS) and robotics. In a recent Q&A in Age of Robots, Considering Ethical and Societal Implications of Robotics and AI: In Reality and Science Fiction There is No Easy Answer, Robert Venditti, novelist and writer of comic books, Ryan Jenkins, assistant professor of philosophy at California Polytechnic State in San Luis Obispo and Lynne Parker, associate dean of engineering at University of Tennessee-Knoxville share their viewpoints on robotics and AI from their varied backgrounds.
As the line between science fiction and fact blurs, many questions arise about what the true capabilities of robotics and A/IS and the ethical and societal implications of these technologies. Bringing together people from diverse backgrounds and disciplines starts an important discussion about the promise and peril of robotics and A/IS. These types of discussions are vital to help ensure future technological development benefit humanity.
Robert, Ryan and Lynne recently provided insight on this topic at the annual SXSW Conference, 9-18 March 2018 in Austin, TX. The session, A Roboticist, Ethicist and Novelist Walk into a Bar, was included in the IEEE Tech for Humanity Series at SXSW.