formalizationv35

formalizationv35 - Technical Report GIT-GVU-07-11 Governing...

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Technical Report GIT-GVU-07-11 Governing Lethal Behavior: Embedding Ethics in a Hybrid Deliberative/Reactive Robot Architecture * Ronald C. Arkin Mobile Robot Laboratory College of Computing Georgia Institute of Technology arkin@cc.gatech.edu [N.B.] State a moral case to a ploughman and a professor. The former will decide it as well, and often better than the latter, because he has not been led astray by artificial rules. 1 Thomas Jefferson 1787 Abstract This article provides the basis, motivation, theory, and design recommendations for the implementation of an ethical control and reasoning system potentially suitable for constraining lethal actions in an autonomous robotic system so that they fall within the bounds prescribed by the Laws of War and Rules of Engagement. It is based upon extensions to existing deliberative/reactive autonomous robotic architectures, and includes recommendations for (1) post facto suppression of unethical behavior, (2) behavioral design that incorporates ethical constraints from the onset, (3) the use of affective functions as an adaptive component in the event of unethical action, and (4) a mechanism in support of identifying and advising operators regarding the ultimate responsibility for the deployment of such a system. 1. Introduction Since the Roman Empire, through the Inquisition and the Renaissance, until today [May et al. 05], humanity has long debated the morality of warfare. While it is universally acknowledged that peace is a preferable condition than warfare, that has not deterred the persistent conduct of lethal conflict over millennia. Referring to the improving technology of the day and its impact on the inevitability of warfare, [Clausewitz 1832] stated “that the tendency to destroy the adversary which lies at the bottom of the conception of War is in no way changed or modified through the progress of civilization”. More recently [Cook 04] observed “The fact that constraints of just war are routinely overridden is no more a proof of their falsity and irrelevance than the existence of immoral behavior ‘refutes’ standards of morality: we know the standard, and we also know human beings fall short of that standard with depressing regularity”. * This research is funded under Contract #W911NF-06-0252 from the U.S. Army Research Office. 1 ME 6:257, Paper 12:15 as reported in [Hauser 06, p. 61]
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2 St. Augustine is generally attributed, 1600 years ago, with laying the foundations of Christian Just War thought [Cook 04] and that Christianity helped humanize war by refraining from unnecessary killing [Wells 96]. Augustine (as reported via Aquinas) noted that emotion can clearly cloud judgment in warfare: The passion for inflicting harm, the cruel thirst for vengeance, an unpacific and relentless spirit, the fever of revolt, the lust of power, and suchlike things, all these are rightly condemned in war [May et al. 05, p. 28]. Fortunately, these potential failings of man need not be replicated in autonomous battlefield
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This note was uploaded on 08/03/2010 for the course MECHANIC 65921 taught by Professor Jons during the Spring '10 term at Tampa.

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formalizationv35 - Technical Report GIT-GVU-07-11 Governing...

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