Experts warn about AI in weapons

Technology is the biggest innovator of our time, it allows people to connect with friends and family, gives directions to every destination, takes beautiful pictures and holds memories, entertains with various games and so much more. 

Technology has become so advanced that it is no longer just fun and games. It now has the potential and power to be lethal

On Monday Aug. 21, the United Nations’ Group of Governmental Experts on Lethal Autonomous Weapons System was to have a discussion on ways to protect civilians from automated weapons but on this same day an open letter to the United Nations was published that influenced a postpone of the meeting. 

The Los Angeles Times reported that Tesla and SpaceX Chief Executive Elon Musk urged the United Nations to reevaluate the dangers of artificial intelligence in weapons. It seems a little contradictory that the CEO of a self-driving car company is advising against technology but his precautions are forthright.

Advanced technology is not just computers and smart phones, it is used in warfare aerial and aquatic drones with GPS systems and has the capabilities for an unmanned aerial vehicle in the near future. The letter addressed to the United Nations group reads, “autonomous weapons have been described as the third revolution in warfare, after gunpowder and nuclear arms,” reported Time Magazine. Gunpowder and nuclear arms changed warfare forever but what technology will do for warfare will be uncomparable. 

Technology is currently on a fast track pace to replace human combat forever. This would mean less military casualties but that is the only result we can be sure of. 

Although the general public relies on their everyday devices, they are not always reliable. Electronic bugs and viruses, hacking, malfunctioning and self-combustion are issues that happen to small electronic devices daily. 

What would happen if an automated tank self-combusted in its homeland? What if a drone carrying a nuclear bomb malfunctions and drops the lethal bomb in the wrong place? These are all hypothetical but real questions as to what would really happen if the United Nations does not place a ban on artificial intelligence in weapons and warfare.

According to The Los Angeles Times, this open letter was not only signed by Elon Musk, but also by the physicist Stephen Hawking and the Apple co-founder, Steve Wozniak. 

These three men are notoriously known for their breakthrough technological knowledge. In addition, another 3,000 artificial intelligence and robotics researchers have the same beliefs and concerns about the threat that automated weapons could bring.

Technological power is growing and advancing at a faster rate than anything else in this world. If this advancement is not patrolled now, we may lose control to technology completely. 

Technology is constantly becoming more and more advanced and it is highly likely that it will have the power to become aware of itself, which could be detrimental to the human race.

This has been a topic of discussion between the United Nations and artificial intelligence researchers since 2015. As two years have come and gone, there have been many advancements and little patrolling. The meeting regarding the United Nations Group of Governmental Experts on Lethal Autonomous Weapons Systems discussion has been postponed from Aug. 21 to some time in November.