The Philosophy of Artificial Intelligence

For most of human history advancements in philosophy unfolded at roughly the same pace as advancements in technology. With the dawn of the Industrial Age the pace of technological advancement accelerated dramatically. We have also shifted the focus of human ingenuity from philosophy to science. The great minds of today are not thinking about reality, existence, values, reason, or equality. They are working on artificial intelligence and splicing the human genome.

Left behind are the weighty moral questions raised by scientific progress. The best philosophical thinking about artificial intelligence was codified 75 years ago by a science fiction author. Asimov’s Three Laws of Robotics assumed robots and artificial intelligence were the same thing. How quaint.

Carlos Bueno explores Justifiable AI at ribbonfarm:

Can an artificial intelligence break the law? Suppose one did. Would you take it to court? Would you make it testify, to swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?

We need more smart people thinking about philosophy.