Chinese Mothers More Likely Than American Mothers to Create Robots That Could Destroy the WorldJanuary 18, 2011 0 Comments
Okay, not really, but here's an interesting article on Pop-Sci exploring the increasing responsibilities over life and death we are giving to robots.
This topic is a continual debate that we, as a society, will be forced to have over the next few decades. Warzone robots currently have the most autonomy, but the kill-order usually must still come from a human. Expect this to change in the years to come, as the U.S. suffers increasing budgetary woes. As the article states, each Predator drone requires a team of 68 personnel, most of them to analyze the massive amounts of incoming data. But, down the road, if the Predator itself could distinguish an enemy...and gain kill authority...you've just saved on the salaries of 68 people and opened a nice, big Pandora's box. Or opened it wider rather.
Poorer nations desperate to gain a military advantage over enemies could conceivably be in more of a rush than the U.S. to field autonomous robots or drones. There also exists a performance degradation when humans must okay every conclusion a robot makes.
In civilian life, expect cost and practicality factors to push robots into healthcare.