The United Nations has finally decided it’s time the looming threat from killer robots was addressed.
The decision was taken after 123 nations participating at the international Convention on Conventional Weapons in Geneva voted in favor of kicking off official discussions on the potential dangers associated with ‘lethal autonomous weapon systems’, the Human Rights Watch reports.
For the uninitiated, ‘lethal autonomous weapon systems’ is basically a technical term for weapons controlled by artificial intelligence that can seek and strike its targets without requiring any human intervention whatsoever.
The decision comes in the awake of the ongoing efforts by the rapidly growing movement that calls for a preemptive ban on all types of weaponized A.I.
“The governments meeting in Geneva took an important step toward stemming the development of killer robots, but there is no time to lose” said Steve Goose, arms director of Human Rights Watch who also co-founded the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots. “Once these weapons exist, there will be no stopping them. The time to act on a pre-emptive ban is now.”
It’s an open secret these days that military agencies across the world are increasingly focusing on the development of lethal autonomous weapons. Just a few months back, China announced that it was working on the potential use of A.I. and automation in the country’s next-generation cruise missiles.
According to Goose, besides the omnipresent dangers of weaponized A.I. going rogue and posing an existential threat to the human race, the very development of such systems could pave the way for a new arms race with countries seeking to outmatch each other by developing increasingly more sophisticated weapon systems, compromising global peace and stability.