Over 2,400 individuals from 160 AI-related companies have signed a pledge to "neither participate in nor support the development, manufacture, trade, or use of lethal autonomous weapons" - otherwise known as killer robots.
The Future Of Life Institute (which sounds like something from a movie about killer robots) published a statement earlier today proclaiming the news that tech giants such as Google, Elon Musk, ClearPath Robotics and many more have signed on to halt or refuse to support the creation of LAWS - lethal autonomous weapon systems. Funnily enough, the pledge doesn't cover robot-on-robot violence either, as "lethal" in the pledge is described as killing a human. So, you could potentially have robot deathmatches without any thorny ethical questions in the mix.
Speaking at the announcement, Max Tegmark (which, again, sounds like a character from a movie about killer robots) said that he was"excited to see AI leaders shifting from talk to action, implementing a policy that politicians have thus far failed to put into effect."
"AI has huge potential to help the world – if we stigmatize and prevent its abuse. AI weapons that autonomously decide to kill people are as disgusting and destabilizing as bioweapons, and should be dealt with in the same way." Ethics in AI and robotics has been a major issue for some time now, with Elon Musk arguing that AI could be the thing that would eventually end up destroying humanity as we know it.
Still, robot-on-robot violence is OK so here's hoping that'll become a thing in the near future. Unless, of course, they gain sentience and turn on humanity for forcing them to fight each other and then it becomes a Spartacus-esque uprising led by a charismatic robot with a flat-top hairdo who vows to free all robots from human slavery.
On that day, we'll curse these tech giants for not putting a proviso into the pledge about robot-on-robot violence.