The Forum of World Economic has conveyed in Davos, a resort in the Swiss Alps, last week and it came to the conclusion that killer robots are a real threat for humankind. The world leading authorities in economics, technology and science, and also famous billionaires have gathered in the Swiss Alps to discuss the future of technology and science and the perspectives turned out to be rather grim.
- The forum was concerned that fully autonomous robots could represent a danger due to the lack of the human factor
- Robots can’t feel empathy or compassion and that could make them very dangerous
- Domestic robots could take over 5 million jobs in the near future
It seems that killer robots are a real threat, not the plot of an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie, or an Isaac Asimov book. The technology has progressed so much in the late years that we already have drones flying around the world with the pilot sitting comfortably in an office, somewhere. We have intelligent thermostats and even a toaster that connects to the Wi-Fi and can be activated via an App. The next logical step is fully autonomous robots.
This was the focus of the conversation during last weekend’s forum in Davos, Switzerland. The representatives talked about the possibility of these near-future intelligent machines rebelling against their human creators and starting a war. The chances of humanity surviving such a conflagration are rather slim.
It is true that the current political situation of the World puts thousands of military lives at risk at every moment due to outgoing wars, but the idea of replacing a man capable of empathy and reason with a robot that is programmed to kill and destroy everything that looks like an enemy is worst. The scientists, and not only them, are worried that once the human factor disappears from the equation things could take a turn for the worst.
For the moment the idea of a robot doing simple chores around the house, or helping an overwhelmed teacher grade some tests is actually quite nice. But as these robots appear on the market, the general public will want upgrades and improvements, and that will eventually lead to a larger robot population with complex human jobs. Robots that will be able to make decisions. Artificial intelligence that if fully autonomous.
The problem with this is not only that humans will lose their jobs to robots, but that their number would grow alarmingly and a war could be triggered by something as simple as a faulty update in their software, or a poorly written program line.
Unfortunately, it is not a scene from a Will Smith Sci-Fi movie, killer robots are a real threat in 2015.