A Response to “The Ethical Frontiers of Robotics”
Conservative estimates on the use of industrial robotics suggest that by 2009, more than a million were employed in operational processes. Robots manufactured and sold for domestic and personal purposes were estimated to be about 7.2 million at the beginning of 2010 (Lichocki, Billard & Kahn, 2011). As Sharkey (2008) provides, robots are very useful in performing activities that are too hazardous, cumbersome and repetitive for human beings to engage in. As such, robots have played a significant role in the development of human society.
They are deployed as bomb disposal units, for complex medical procedures, large scale manufacturing processes, complex medical procedures and entertainment. The application of robots has however come to be viewed from an ethical perspective and issues have arisen as to the risks that the unethical application of robots poses to the development of human society. This paper seeks to delve on this issue by discussing the ethical issues with regard to the application of robotics as postulated by Noel Sharkey.
Ethical considerations with regards to robotics arise dependent on the manner of application (Lichocki, Billard & Kahn, 2011). One can accurately discern that industrial and medical robotics does not present grave ethical concerns with regard to human interaction. However, robotics employed primarily for domestic and personal human interaction as well as for use in warfare raises a number of ethical issues.
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