A group of over 100 AI experts along with SpaceX founder Elon Musk urged the United Nations to place a ban on killer robots. Musk, Google Deepmind’s experts, and 114 other academics and AI researchers penned a letter to the international forum, asking for an outright ban on the technology.
The experts are concerned killer robots may cause a “third revolution in warfare”. The move happened at the time the planet’s largest AI conference – IJCAI 2017 – took place.
Experts are concerned lethal autonomous weapon systems could engage in combat on their own and likely kill innocent humans. The group argues that these machines can lead to wars that are fought on a greater scale than ever imagined and “at timescales faster than humans can comprehend”.
A Pandora’s Box Could Be Opened
Scientists are concerned the robots could be turned into weapons of terror by terrorists and dictators across the planet. The weapons could wipe out entire populations if they are hacked.
It is not the first time AI experts and Musk join forces to warn against the dangers of killer robot technology. Musk sponsors Open Ai, an initiative aimed at promoting ethical AI research.
However, despite the concerns, the world’s leaders have yet to issue a full-fledged ban on the weapons. Researchers are concerned the situation could get out of control if no measure is undertaken. AI systems are already being developed at a mind-numbing pace.
“We do not have long to act. Once this Pandora’s box is opened, it will be hard to close,”
researchers wrote in the letter.
The authors of the letter consider killer robots a “third revolution in warfare” as the invention of gunpowder and nuclear weapons were the first two. Those two inventions haven’t been exactly beneficial to the world we all live in.
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