Two media critiques about our future with robots

After years of alarmist comments from robo-ethicists, futurists, technologists, business leaders and pundits, including Elon Musk, Bill Gates and Stephen Hawking, two journalists bring some reality to...
26 May 2015, by

Robot caregivers: How much interaction with a robot is socially acceptable?

With the continuous increase in life expectancy and the number of people aged 65+ on the rise, it is no wonder that many roboticists have been discussing the use of robot as companion/caregiver for e...
28 January 2015, by

Slow down that runaway ethical trolley

The runaway trolley has chased automated motor vehicles into the new year. In early 2012, I raised a variation of the classic thought experiment to argue that there is not always a single absolu...
13 January 2015, by

Automata: The new “sci-fi” blockbuster set to put robot ethics under a spotlight

A major new sci-fi movie, Automata, promises to not only provide a feast for the eyes (see below for a clip from the film), but an overdue opportunity to spotlight some of the ethical dilemmas arising...
19 September 2014, by

Facebook – Our ffriendly automated identity bender

I like Star Wars. I like technology. I like philosophy. I like teaching. I like the occasional meme. I like robots. I like a lot of things. But if I were to give an accurate account of the things t...
11 July 2014, by



A Code of Ethics for HRI Practitioners, with Laurel Riek

Human-robot interaction is a fascinating field of research in robotics. It also happens to be the field that is closely related to many of the ethical concerns raised with regards to interactive robot...
14 June 2014, by

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An ethical dilemma: When robot cars must kill, who should pick the victim?

Image credit: Craig Berry We are moving closer to having driverless cars on roads everywhere, and naturally, people are starting to wonder what kinds of ethical challenges driverless cars will pose. ...
11 June 2014, by

Pure autonomy: Google’s new purpose-built self driving car

Google completed a major step in its long and extensive self-driving cars project by presenting its first purpose-built autonomous car, which is designed from scratch for its role and is not a modifie...
28 May 2014, by



RoboRoach, with Bill Reith and Oliver Bendel

In this episode, Ron Vanderkley speaks with Bill Reith, an engineer at Backyard Brains. The company develops RoboRoach, the world’s first commercially available “cyborg”, which was successfully ...
16 May 2014, by

What should a robot do? Designing robots that know right from wrong

A large robot comes out of an office mailroom carrying a package marked “Urgent” to deliver to the boss upstairs. After navigating down the hall at maximum speed, it discovers someone is already w...
29 April 2014, by and

Privacy, Google, and Big Deals, with Avner Levin

Link to audio file (33:53) What does it mean to have giants like Google, Apple and Amazon investing in robotics? Since last December, Google alone has acquired a handful of companies in robotics, hom...
07 March 2014, by

AJung Moon on “What does it mean to have giants like Google, Apple and Amazon investing in robotics?”

We have reasons to feel both excited and uneasy about giant corporations’ investment in robotics. It’s exciting for the robotics community that the giants (Google, Apple, and Amazon) are active...
12 February 2014, by

If you could enhance yourself with some robotic accessory or implant, what would it be?

  cy·borg  -  ˈsīˌbôrg/ - noun a fictional or hypothetical person whose physical abilities are extended beyond normal human limitations by mechanical elements built into the bod...
15 January 2014, by

AJung Moon on “If you could enhance yourself by some robotic accessory or implant, what would it be?”

As a researcher in robotics, I tend to cringe whenever someone asks how long it will take until people start to see terminator-like robots on the streets. It’s a fun question to think about, but it ...
15 January 2014, by

AJung Moon on “What were the top stories in robotics from 2013?”

2013 was a year filled with talk of drones. I’m not saying this just because I’m biased by the recent news reporting on how large companies (Amazon, DHL, and UPS to be exact) are exploring t...
11 December 2013, by

Working with EOD Personnel, with Julie Carpenter

Link to audio file (34:30) In this episode, AJung Moon talks to Julie Carpenter, a recent graduate of the University of Washington who interviewed 23 U.S. Military Explosive Ordnance Disposal person...
29 November 2013, by

Ethical robots: Some technical and ethical challenges

I've been talking about robot ethics for several years now, but that's mostly been about how we roboticists must be responsible and mindful of the societal impact of our creations. Two years ago I w...
19 November 2013, by

Legal issues with robots | Communications of the ACM

There is no question that robotic technology is making life easier, safer, or more convenient for human beings. Despite these benefits, concerns remain about what happens when robotic technology fails...
11 November 2013, by

Don’t blame technology for persistent unemployment | Slate

Posting on the Slate blog Future Tense, James Bessen takes issue with the notion that technology causes unemployment, illustrating his point by debunking a pair of frequently cited examples, textile w...
06 October 2013, by

Paradigm shift

Global Future 2045, held June 15-16 in New York City, had a big impact on me. The double-message promotion of GF2045 was intriguing and I thought it would be similarly interesting to my readers. PR...
20 July 2013, by

Meet the man behind the push to ban killer robots | Motherboard

To bring clearer into focus the backdrop of killer robots and the threat they pose, I talked to Peter Asaro, co-founder of the International Committee for Robot Arms Control. The author of the UN rep...
14 June 2013, by

Drones & Aerial Robotics Conference at NYU

Call for Proposals (closes May 27) Drones & Aerial Robotics Conference October 11-13, 2013 NYU School of Law...
22 May 2013, by

We Robot Conference: 4. Social robot demo

On April 8-9, Stanford Law School held the second annual robotics and law conference, We Robot. This year’s event focused on near-term policy issues in robotics and featured panels and papers by sch...
21 May 2013, by

Autonomous lethal weapons, with Peter Asaro

Link to audio file (29:07)In this episode, AJung talks to Peter Asaro from The New School in New York city about autonomous weapons systems. Peter tells us about the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots, an...
17 May 2013, by

Robotic Justice | Huffington Post

From Roombas to drones, scientists are developing machines to be more and more self-sufficient. But even if they’re programmed to do good—what happens when something goes wrong? If a robot 'accide...
13 May 2013, by

Campaign to Stop Killer Robots: Let’s all stop them, shall we?

Killer robots. Looking at the two words together is enough to conjure up images of chaos and destruction.  They're an image far too familiar in science fiction settings such as Isaac Asimov or Ar...
27 April 2013, by

Stopping the deployment of “killer robots” | Humans Rights Watch

In November last year, the Human Rights Watch released the "Losing Humanity" report (which we've already covered on Robohub). This report discussed the role of robots in armed conflict, summarized th...
23 April 2013, by

We Robot: Live coverage on robotics and the law

Updated April 9, 2013 | Check this post for our live coverage of the We Robot conference happening April 8-9 at Stanford Law School....
06 April 2013, by

Nate the Robot RH.3 – The Expendables

So if you really think about it, today's comic brings up several interesting issues regarding robots and war.  One that comes to mind that is certainly not anywhere near a reality, is what if robots ...
22 March 2013, by

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