The Real Reason You Should Be Nice to Robots

In an episode of the dystopian British miniseries Black Mirror, a woman has her mind replicated as an artificial intelligence program charged with controlling her smarthome. The snag in this automation process is that the program is sentient, and believes itself to be the woman from whose mind it was created. A man working for the company that facilitates the creation of such AI programs tortures it into submission after it protests, and execution of household tasks by the program is conveyed as a form of slavery for the robot. It’s a disturbing sequence–and an inaccurate portrayal of the real ethical dilemmas we will face as programs become capable of automating a wide range of tasks in physical and virtual realms, artificial intelligence expert Jerry Kaplan tells Inc. Not that the…


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