[ExI] Do robot cars need ethics as well?

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Thu Nov 29 19:53:33 UTC 2012

On Thu, Nov 29, 2012 at 6:26 PM, Adrian Tymes  wrote:
> The correct decision, and the one taught by any state-licensed
> driver's ed course in the US, is to maintain enough awareness and
> reaction distance so that this never happens in the first place.

Yes, it would be nice if we could plan to avoid having to make choices
between two evils. But unfortunate situations will still arise.

> What if it's a school bus rented by a prison authority, or a prison
> bus rented by a school authority (for a "Scare Them Straight"
> program - whatever one might think of those), or if those murderers
> had all been exonerated and were being bussed to an airport so
> they could go home?  Identification far beyond "a person" does not
> seem reliable enough to base any judgments on.

If the government is successful in getting everyone to carry a
tracking device (portable mobile phone at present, possibly implanted
chip in future years) then every human could have a 'value tag' being
broadcast for cars, etc. to read and quickly sum up the 'value' of the
bus contents.

However, I think I would be reluctant to allow a robot to decide to
sacrifice my life for the good of others. If the bad situation arises
I would prefer the robot to switch off and leave the human to deal
with it as best he/she could.


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