A New Milestone Of Robot Ethics

A bomb disposal robot similar to that used to end standoff with Dallas gunman Micah Johnson.

Big questions arise from the tragic shootings of recent days in Dallas Texas. The local police defended their decision to use a robot to kill the gunman who had fatally shot five officers. The gunman was killed by the explosion of a device carried toward him by remote control, after he was cornered by officers at a college parking garage. The action is thought to be the first killing carried out by US police using a robot.

In the days since the event, legal experts around the world have expressed concern that the use of killer robots raises a battery of technical, ethical and legal questions which must be answered. Designers and professionals of every kind beware, there is much to be done to address the psychological, societal, ethical and legal aspects of our new non-human citizens.