'More than 50 artificial intelligence researchers and experts from nearly 30 countries around the world announced a boycott on Thursday of a South Korean university whose new defense partnership, they fear, could lead to the development of "killer robots."
"At a time when the United Nations is discussing how to contain the threat posed to international security by autonomous weapons, it is regrettable that a prestigious institution like KAIST [Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology] looks to accelerate the arms race to develop such weapons," wrote the researchers in an open letter.
The letter adds:
If developed, autonomous weapons will be the third revolution in warfare. They will permit war to be fought faster and at a scale greater than ever before. They have the potential to be weapons of terror. Despots and terrorists could use them against innocent populations, removing any ethical restraints. This Pandora's box will be hard to close if it is opened. As with other technologies banned in the past like blinding lasers, we can simply decide not to develop them. We urge KAIST to follow this path, and work instead on uses of A.I. to improve and not harm human lives.
KAIST opened a new lab in February in partnership with Hanwha Systems, one South Korea's largest weapons manufacturers, prom50+ Artificial Intelligence Scholars Launch Boycott of University Over Fears of 'Killer Robot' Weapons Labpting a report in the Korea Times that the two would join "the global competition to develop autonomous arms."
Hanwha Systems manufactures highly-destructive cluster munitions, which are prohibited by a U.N. convention signed by 120 countries.'
Read more: 50+ Artificial Intelligence Scholars Launch Boycott of University Over Fears of 'Killer Robot' Weapons Lab