A Safe Ethical System for Intelligent Machines

Presentation Powerpoint * Proceedings PDF presented Nov. 6, 2009 at the AAAI 2009 Fall Symposium on Biologically Inspired Cognitive Architectures (Washington, DC)

As machines become more intelligent and take on more responsibilities, their decision-making capabilities must be informed and constrained by a coherent, integrated moral/ethical structure with no internal inconsistencies for everyone’s safety and well-being. Unfortunately, no such structure is currently agreed upon to exist. We propose to solve this problem by a) drawing upon experimental evidence and lessons learned from evolution and economics to show that morality is actually objective and derivable from first principles; b) presenting a coherent, integrated, platonic ethical system with no internal inconsistencies that flows naturally from a single high-level logically-derived Kantian imperative to low-level reflexive “rules of thumb” that match current human sensibilities; and c) suggesting a biologically-inspired architecture which supports and enforces this system which can be relatively easily implemented.

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