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Wednesday, 14 May 2014 10:32

UN debates killing the Terminator

Written by Nick Farrell



But they are always back

The UN is debating if it would be a good idea to allow corporate goons to build terminator robots which are capable of killing humans. The United Nations is holding a meeting at its New York City headquarters to discuss the legality of autonomous killer robots. Semi-autonomous machines, such as drones, have already killed thousands of humans and the fear is that terminator machines could follow soon.

The UN's Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons bans or limits the use of weapons that kill civilians indiscriminately or cause unnecessary pain, such as mines and lasers designed to blind people. So far, they have not worked out a definition of an autonomous weapon, which can presumably refer to anything from an autonomous humanoid robot to a fully autonomous drone. They will then discuss legal and ethical questions behind the use of such weapons. 

The US’s view is that the reality of autonomous killing machines is nothing like the movies and the UN should focus on these rather than a fear of Arnold Schwarzenegger. We would have thought that Schwarzenegger would break any arms limitation agreements anyway.

Nick Farrell

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