It’s not been made clear where or how this technology will be used at Google, but the purchased has been coupled with a report that an ethics board is being formed to help create rules for the application of artificial intelligence.
Google has a lot of things that an ethics board for artificial intelligence could have a hand in. As a contractor to the Department of Defense, as the creator of self driving vehicles, and as the glue bringing together dozens of the brightest minds in robotics, there’s more than a few applications that will require rules for the general population to be alright with everything. Almost more important that how this newly acquired technology is used on public facing projects is how it is used internally at Google, which is a big part of why theethics board would need to be comprised of employees who are familiar with Google’s inner workings as opposed to outside sources.
The next few steps for Google are important ones because as of right now they are at the forefront of these technologies. The rules created for the use of artificial intelligence in whatever context Google decides to apply them may start out as being specific to Google, but the significant global influence the company has could quickly see them become standards as other organizations begin to move into these same areas. It puts Google in a unique new position of power as an authority in artificial intelligence, and could easily make them responsible for the first implementation of the three laws of robotics.
And, of course, Isaac Asimov’s Three Laws are:
- A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
- A robot must obey the orders given to it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
- A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.