Future generations could be exterminated by Terminator-style robots unless machines are taught the value of human life.
This is the stark warning made by Amsterdam-based engineer Nell Watson, who believes droids could kill humans out of both malice and kindness. Teaching machines to be kind is not enough, she says, as robots could decide that the greatest compassion to humans as a race is to get rid of everyone to end suffering.
‘The most important work of our lifetime is to ensure that machines are capable of understanding human value,’ she said at the recent ‘Conference by Media Evolution’ in Sweden. ‘It is those values that will ensure machines don’t end up killing us out of kindness.’
Why would we expect robots to be more enlightened than many of our so-called thought leaders?
Pay attention to debates around euthanasia, health-care rationing, transhumanism, animal rights, radical environmentalism — and other war on humans agenda items. We may not be into total genocide, but the quest to end suffering definitely puts many of us in the proverbial cross hairs.
Before we can teach robots the value of human life, we need to accept it ourselves.