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George A. Bekey
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Robots today serve in many roles, from entertainer to educator toexecutioner. As robotics technology advances, ethical concerns become more pressing: Should robots be programmed to follow a code of ethics, if this is even possible?Are there risks in forming emotional bonds with robots? How might society--andethics--change with robotics? This volume is the first book to bring togetherprominent scholars and experts from both science and the humanities to explore theseand other questions in this emerging field. Starting with an overview of the issuesand relevant ethical theories, the topics flow naturally from the possibility ofprogramming robot ethics to the ethical use of military robots in war to legal andpolicy questions, including liability and privacy concerns. The contributors thenturn to human-robot emotional relationships, examining the ethical implications ofrobots as sexual partners, caregivers, and servants. Finally, they explore thepossibility that robots, whether biological-computational hybrids or pure machines, should be given rights or moral consideration. Ethics is often slow to catch up withtechnological developments. This authoritative and accessible volume fills a gap inboth scholarly literature and policy discussion, offering an impressive collectionof expert analyses of the most crucial topics in this increasingly importantfield.
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