Social Impact and Ethics of Robotics

Date and Time:
Thursday, August 30th, 2018, 12 PM – 1 PM
Located at Camp:


AI is reshaping our entire world and this change is coming fast. Voice enabled assistants, home robots, flying cars, personalized medicine … are all just around the corner. With AI we have made significant advances in computer vision, speech recognition, natural language understanding and motor skills. Emulating human cognitive intelligence is the next big step.

In the first part of the talk we will explore the future of work. The real power of AI is to assist, augment and automate decision making. We are beginning to see software robots augmenting humans to realize an autonomous enterprise. What is the impact going to be? In some jobs AI will help humans have super powers. However, there are many routine jobs that machines will end up doing. What are going to be the new jobs of the future? Being freed from being robotic will allow us to be more human, but what will we actually do? How will we make a living? What about income disparity between the owners of robots and the rest of us?

Will machines feel and love? Will they develop a heart, consciousness, and soul?

What are the other social and ethical challenges of AI – the opaqueness, bias & errors of AI, weaponization of robots, loss of privacy and surveillance, and the dehumanization of the world. And finally, as machines improve themselves continuously to build super intelligence, will humans stay in control? Must we?

T. M. Ravi is the founder of The Hive, a studio for co-creating and funding AI based startups in Silicon Valley. He is co-chair of the Lucas Arts Program at the Montalvo Art Center.