Are the Machines Taking Over? The Ethics of Artificial Intelligence

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Duration 01:02:00

Duke University

Walter Sinnott-Armstrong is Chauncey Stillman Professor of Practical Ethics in the Kenan Institute for Ethics, the Departments of Philosophy and of Psychology and Neuroscience, and the Law School at Duke University. He has received fellowships from the Harvard Program in Ethics and the Professions, the Princeton Center for Human Values, and the Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics. His most recent books include Neuroscience and Philosophy and Free Will: Philosophers and Neuroscientists in Conversation.



Computers answer questions and give directions. They decide who gets organs for transplantation and bail in criminal courts. They serve as companions for elderly and disabled, and they guide autonomous cars and weapons of war. Is it dangerous or immoral to leave all of these decisions to machines? Will computers make morally better decisions than humans do? Can artificial intelligence improve on human moral judgments? Will artificial intelligence systems or robots act in destructive ways? We need to face all of these questions in the near future. The solution is to build morality into computers, but how can we do that? We will see. This class will discuss how artificial intelligence is well on its way to running nearly every aspect of our lives as technology embedded in web enabled devices, algorithms, and the programs that power them make a staggering number of everyday decisions for us.



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Merle Imler

Excellent all around

Excellent all around. The choice of topic was excellent, the presenter was excellent, and the information provided was excellent. I look forward to more lectures on this topic.

3 years ago
Francis Stein


I have watched about 100 One Day University lectures and this, for every thoughtful person, has to be on, or near, the top.
A difficult topic made very understandable. A few years ago, so few realized what a pervasive part computers would play in our everyday life. A generation from now, AI is going to be an even more significant part of everyday life and it is so important that we get it off on the right foot.
Thank you Dr. Armstrong for giving us so much to think about.
Frank Stein

1 year ago
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