World urged to stop killer ro­bots at Davos

The Pak Banker - - BUSINESS -

DAVOS: The world must act quickly to avert a fu­ture in which au­ton­o­mous ro­bots with ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence roam the bat­tle­fields killing hu­mans, sci­en­tists and arms ex­perts warned at an elite gath­er­ing in the Swiss Alps. Rules must be agreed to pre­vent the de­vel­op­ment of such weapons, they said at a Jan­uary 19-23 meet­ing of bil­lion­aires, sci­en­tists and political lead­ers in the snow-cov­ered ski re­sort of Davos. An­gela Kane, the Ger­man UN High Rep­re­sen­ta­tive for Dis­ar­ma­ment Affairs from 2012-2015, said the world had been slow to take pre-emp­tive mea­sures to pro­tect hu­man­ity from the lethal tech­nol­ogy.

"It may be too late," she told a de­bate in Davos. "There are many coun­tries and many rep­re­sen­ta­tives in the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity that re­ally do not un­der­stand what is in­volved. This de­vel­op­ment is some­thing that is lim­ited to a cer­tain num­ber of ad­vanced coun­tries," Kane said. "We are not talk­ing about drones, where a hu­man pi­lot is con­trol­ling the drone," said Stu­art Rus­sell, pro­fes­sor of com­puter sci­ence at Univer­sity of Cal­i­for­nia, Berke­ley. "We are talk­ing about au­ton­o­mous weapons, which means that there is no one be­hind it. AI: ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence weapons," he told a fo­rum in Davos. "Very pre­cisely, weapons that can lo­cate and at­tack tar­gets with­out hu­man in­ter­ven­tion." But some 1,000 sci­ence and tech­nol­ogy chiefs in­clud­ing Bri­tish physi­cist Stephen Hawk­ing, said in an open let­ter last July that the de­vel­op­ment of weapons with a de­gree of au­ton­o­mous de­ci­sion-mak­ing ca­pac­ity could be fea­si­ble within years, not decades. They called for a ban on of­fen­sive au­ton­o­mous weapons that are be­yond mean­ing­ful hu­man con­trol, warn­ing that the world risked slid­ing into an ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence arms race and rais­ing alarm over the risks of such weapons fall­ing into the hands of vi­o­lent ex­trem­ists.

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