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The prospect of the ability of machines and weapons systems to act autonomously without human intervention is of concern to the scientific community.
In an open letter, a panel of experts from 26 states urged the UN to ban the development and use of autonomous weapons systems.
Among the signatories are Tesla’s CEO, Ilon Mask, DeepMind co-founder, Mustafa Suleyman, as well as other heads of robotics and artificial intelligence.
Regarding autonomous weapon systems, the letter states:
As soon as they are developed, they will allow armed conflicts to run on a scale greater than ever and on timetables faster than people can understand. These may end up being weapons of terrorism, weapons that tyrants and terrorists can use against civilian populations. We do not have much time to act. When Pandora’s box opens, it will be difficult to close.
In recent years, Mask has repeatedly warned of the dangers of using autonomous weapon systems. He has donated millions of dollars to fund research into finding ways to avoid their use.
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