In South Korea last week, The Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy announced plans to draft a Robot Ethics Charter. It will require manufacturers and customers to program robots with specific moral values affecting how they interact with humans. The ministry believes this is necessary since robots are expected to develop strong intelligence in the near future.
Park Hye-Young, a member of the ministry's robot team, said the charter will reflect The Three Laws of Robotics first proposed by Isaac Asimov in the 1942 short story Runaround.
1. A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm;According to Park, low birth rates and an aging population have made the adoption of robots in "service" roles an important part of the government's future-planning. Last year The Ministry of Information and Communication stated it hoped to have a robot in every South Korean household between 2015 and 2020.
2. A robot must obey orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the first law;
3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the first or second law.
Imagine if some people treat androids as if the machines were their wives. Others may get addicted to interacting with them just as many internet users get hooked to the cyberworld.
Will we be seeing them on Critical Mass anytime soon?