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A Cyborg Bill of Rights

Bob Cousins bob at lintilla.demon.co.uk
Tue Jul 21 18:07:01 EST 1998

In comp.robotics.misc, steve lajoie wrote:

>Rick Harker <aibrain at usa.net> wrote in article <35B48723.A0F8C2C at usa.net>...
>> Malcolm MacLeod & Others wrote: /snipped/
>> Why is it that some you people cannot see that Arthur is *trying* to
>> give us (AI) a start? Does it matter that he is/not a sophomore college
>> student; that he does/not use the exact words /you/ would use.
>> So far I have seen no one but Arthur and a few others making any
>> progress, and having the courage to post it to the net without some
>> wanna-be geniuses putting down their work.
>The whole point of a robot is to create a being we can abuse,
>We want it to work for cheap, do dangerous jobs, do unrewarding 
>gopher work, and so on. Rights? Robots don't get no stinking

The same point occurred to me. The more worrying thing for me is whether
intelligent software will deem that humans should have any rights, or just treat
us the way we treat chimps. Even with Asimov's Laws, AI minds may decide that we
are our own worst enemy, and that in order to protect us we must be eliminated

I think this all somewhat premature though; it'll be a few centuries before
computers will need rights, and any way, if they're so smart, they will ask for

To be honest, I haven't seen anything useful from Mentifex. A lot of nonsense
wrapped in big words designed to impress rather than inform, and some grossly
simplistic ASCII artwork don't come close. I think real progress is being made
by practitioners such as Brooks and Tilden, but if there is anything remotely
practical in Mentifex let us know. I admit his strangely organized web site did
have some useful robot links :-)
Bob Cousins, Software Engineer.
Home page at http://www.lintilla.demon.co.uk/

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