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Science & Technology

Top US general warns against killer robots

By T.K. Randall
July 19, 2017 · Comment icon 7 comments

Could we end up in a world dominated by sentient machines ? Image Credit: CC BY 2.0 Dick Thomas Johnson
General Paul Selva has spoken out about the dangers of creating fully autonomous weapon systems.
The risks of giving autonomy to so-called 'killer machines' have been highlighted time and again over the years in movies such as 'The Terminator' and 'The Matrix', but could an intelligent computer ever truly decide that humanity is a threat and attempt to wipe us off the planet ?

During a recent Senate Armed Services Committee hearing, US General Paul Selva expressed how important it was to maintain human control over systems capable of killing other people "lest we unleash on humanity a set of robots that we don't know how to control."

"I don't think it's reasonable for us to put robots in charge of whether or not we take a human life," he said. "There will be a raucous debate in the department about whether or not we take humans out of the decision to take lethal action."
It's a concern that has been brought up many times by SpaceX CEO Elon Musk who has warned that intelligent machines represent a "fundamental risk to the existence of civilization."

"I have access to the very most cutting edge AI, and I think people should be really concerned about it," he said. "AI is a rare case where I think we need to be proactive in regulation instead of reactive."

"Because I think by the time we are reactive in AI regulation, it's too late."

Source: IB Times | Comments (7)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by ExpandMyMind 7 years ago
...He said, right before flicking the 'on' switch.
Comment icon #2 Posted by EBE Hybrid 7 years ago
Sounds like a sensible man
Comment icon #3 Posted by OverSword 7 years ago
Because robots (the one's that aren't human) won't obey illegal orders.
Comment icon #4 Posted by spud the mackem 7 years ago
The General is right but what happens when other countries are doing the same thing.
Comment icon #5 Posted by UFOwatcher 7 years ago
They are watching too many movies. Hollywood has a big influence on us all. Don't fear the AI but keep a way to turn it off.
Comment icon #6 Posted by OverSword 7 years ago
And they would probably come out of the factory with default software forbidding them from accepting instructions for things such as killing every person in a town unless they were all armed. 
Comment icon #7 Posted by Aten 7 years ago
I (SADLY)still think its too soon to worry, maybe 20years from now. IMO its more a power issue than an AI issue. When 'they' get around to making (to put it simply) better batteries (power source) then things will speed up.

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