Can Robots Make Ethical Decisions?

Discussion in 'Intelligence & Machines' started by sandy, Sep 21, 2009.

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  1. kx000 Valued Senior Member

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    He doesn't exist in the physical, only in the spiritual. He lives through us. We are taught to hate, and lust and it makes him stronger. And just because you can't prove something doesn't mean it isn't there. You would have a much tougher time disproving God, than me proving the All Mighty.
     
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  3. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

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    Huuum, the spiritual, well sure it could be exist, but there is a problem, you see a lot of people seem to have different ideas on what is this 'spiritual' and I would like to know who is right and who is wrong and thus who to believe, and more so why its important that I do? I would hope there is some kind of evidence to settle this.
     
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  5. kx000 Valued Senior Member

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    Search inward for spiritual answers
     
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  7. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

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    OK, my inner spirit says Cthulhu, he's tits, so should I worship him?
     
  8. kx000 Valued Senior Member

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    Cthulhu has not barring on humanity, or life. Its a monster, like Godzilla, it represents mass death, and humans moving down on the food chain. In this way it represents the devil. If you truly did soul searching and found this answer then sorry. Btw, its not YOUR inner spirit, its OUR inner spirit.
     
  9. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

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    But what if my or our spirit tells me that the universe is nothing but mass death and suffering, sure does explain the disproportionate amount of suffering in this world, and that festering in the belly of the old ones is the only answer, that the best we can ask for is a quick end to our suffering.
     
  10. gvontaube Registered Senior Member

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    Ok- back on topic then.

    Robots cannot make ethical decisions. They can (assuming they are properly programmed) make statistically correct decisions. I want to make the distinction between morally proper decisions and statistically correct decisions clear. A morally proper decision would be one where all people agree and believe it is correct, but we live in a multicultural society in which that isn't just possible, if you take the choice of killing a black baby or a white old man. This in and of itself is going to cause some controversy by just saying it. But a computer can weigh the differences in the potential of what the black and the white person will do with the time that they have in their lives, and make a statistically valid decision, but ethically, very few humans will agree with the reasoning behind the robot's calculations
     
  11. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

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    I disagree robots could make ethical decision if A) they are intelligent enough and B) they are program with the ability to make such decisions. If its program to follow commands as paramount then it lacks B: anything you tell it to do it will do, it does not matter to it if its right or wrong; in such as case if you tell it to murder babies it will do so without question. If its programed with some another paramount and even with a list of directives in hierarchal order then it can make ethical decisions. If its programed never to kill humans and you order it to murder babies it will reject that order, if placed in control of society it would probably outlaw abortion, depending if under thought it defines fetus as human.
     
  12. wellwisher Banned Banned

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    The first thing the computer would need to know is the difference between moral and ethical.

    Moral is based on that which maximizes the group entity. Because moral law maximizes the group, it may not always maximize each individual. This second maximization (inidividual) is where ethics comes in. For example, thou shall not steal is a moral law. This moral law could help maximize the group, since the amount of resources and time spent that is spent on defensive measures against stealing would be zero, making more resources available for other things. There is no need for locks, passwords, security systems, etc.,which saves the group money and time.

    Although this moral law might help maximize the entity called the group, ethics is less about the group, and more about the needs of the individual or a subset of the group, such as a special interest group. For example, in the above, the united union of theives and pickpockets would not benefit by this moral law. It would create hardship for those people whose natural skill and livelihood involves stealing.

    An ethical decision in this case, will yry to create a loop hole in the moral law, which balances the group while also trying to maximizes this special interest group via individual maximization. The ehtical law might allow stealing once every other week. The group is no longer maximized, since this will create a social cost due to defensive measures. But it wll help some people. The result will be an increase in social costs.

    In a moral culture, with intelligent and well thought out moral laws, the group can become so efficient and maximized that there is often a surplus in resources. This allows resources to become earmarked for ethical decisions that can benefit individuals and special interests groups. As long as the moral is greater than the ethical, the equation is OK. But if ethical becomes greater than moral, social cost begin to sky rocket.

    The computer would be good at finding the sweet spot. Whereas moral often needs to be logical to maximize the entire group, ethical choices are often all about marketing and emotional appeal. Making such a decision would be a different program. it is less about the ehtical law as the ability to market and sell.

    Let me give an example. We will start with the moral law, thou shall not steal. A good ethical marketing, to isome individuals ethical gain value from the moral surplus, is the hypothetical; say a man was very hungry and needed to feed his starving family, would it be ethical to steal?

    You might say yes, under the conditons of extreme hunger. It is not moral (group maximize) but it is a good ethical (slight cost). The defense lawyers can then use that as the starting point to argue, that this man, who was caught stealing, was very hungry (he hadn't eaten in over two hours). The current law says "very hungry in nebulous terms". This aledged normally likes to eat ten times a day. We have experts that can confirm he was indeed very hungry so it was ethical.

    The social cost of the initial good ethical decision, starts to increase as the loophole becomes larger. Lawyers have an ethical duty to defend everyone(translated; get both their share of the moral surplus). The moral might try to get a sphincter on the loophole, by getting moral.

    The computer needs all these variables.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2011
  13. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

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    Why do you persist in posting nonsense?
    What makes you think "ethical choices are often all about marketing and emotional appeal"?
     
  14. wellwisher Banned Banned

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    Moral is about the group and ethical is about a subset. Since there is a cost, you need to appeal to the group in a way they can subjectively justify this. There are useful things which sell themselves other things require politics and lawyer who can walk the fence.
     
  15. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

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    Pure nonsense.
     
  16. wellwisher Banned Banned

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    Explain so I can make sure you understand and are not just using a fortune telling 8-ball to define your critique.

    Don't get me wrong, there are good ethical choices, but even the best ones will become extrapolated. For example, the ethics of abortion were first pitched to protect women who were at high physical and emotional risk due to coat hanger abortions, and to help those who were victims of rape and incest. This was a good ethical choice since the extra social cost is balanced out by the good that is done. But today abortion is a form of birth control. That was not in the original pitch. Once the ethical tap is placed on the tit of morality, there will be opportunists who try to tap into moral surplus through this nipple. The abortion issue has been used for politics and still works. There is nothing ethical about exploiting ethics for personal and political gain.

    A computer may be helpful in terms of defining the ethical cutoff, where good ethical choices start to become exploited for reasons that are not even ethical.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2011
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