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Robots – our friends, enemies or protectors?

Robots – our friends, enemies or protectors?

We've been interested in robots for a long time. The robot has intelligent actions, is very resourceful and can work non-stop. Sci-fi movies have brought robots to life, and even though the plot is exaggerated, robots will still be an integral part of our future. Most of the time, robots serve humans and interact in a friendly manner, but sometimes they are also aggressive towards humans and have a mission to conquer, enslave, or destroy humanity.

In general, we believe that robots will benefit our progress and that humans can control robots and use them for good. However, some people feel that robots can invade our lives, take away jobs and turn against humans. Therefore, it is important that we begin to consider social, ethical and legal issues, as well as the role robots play in our lives.

The problem that robots can easily creep into our daily lives is very important, especially now, as technology and artificial intelligence (AI) continue to advance at a rapid pace. The European Parliament classifies AIs as "Electric People", and believes that they will be human-like and may even surpass human intellectual abilities one day. This leaves us with a very important question. Who will be in control?

Playwright Karel Čapek was the first to pose such a problem in Rossum's Universal Robots (RUR) which was first performed on January 25, 1921. Derived from “robota” which means “forced labor” in Czechoslovakia, the word “robot” was invented by his brother, the theater actor Josef Čapek. The play is about robots that are human-like biological entities created to work in place of humans, As time goes on, the robots gradually take over all jobs and humanity gradually becomes more and more human. so useless, no longer able to contribute positively to society. In the end, the robots, disgusted with the status of working slaves for humans, decided to destroy the useless existence of humanity, leaving only one human being still able to work. In fact, the man was saved only because he was able to create more robots. However, The previous recipe for the robot was destroyed by its creator shortly after the robots were created, and the last surviving human failed to reproduce the recipe. In the turning point at the end of the play, two robots feel love and live happily together, leaving the audience with the impression that they will perpetuate their race and form the foundation for a civilization new.

In order to protect humanity from the catastrophic fate that Karel Čapek's play poses, writer Isaac Asimov created the "Three Laws for Robots" in the short story "Runaround" he composed in 1942. That law is:

1. A robot must not harm a human or ignore a human being harmed.

2. A robot must obey orders given by humans unless these commands conflict with the first law.

3. A robot must protect itself provided that such protection does not conflict with the first and second laws. 


The above rules will ensure that we can avoid extreme situations like those that Karel Čapek set out in the play RUR However, more importantly, there are still many problems with how to mode of interaction between people and electronic entities to ensure usefulness, security, and social logic. The European Parliament has opened a dialogue on “Rules of Civil Law on Robots” . The draft report dated 31 May 2016 by Ms. Mady Delvaux, Vice-President of the Parliamentary Legal Committee, offers a series of proposals to help the European Commission prepare to face developments that are not cessation of automation technology and artificial intelligence.

By raising concerns about future employment and the viability of current security and tax systems, the report warns of legal challenges, Social and ethical issues can occur and have significant impacts on people's lives. These are problems that can lead to increasing inequality in the distribution of wealth and power in society. Going further, the draft report also stated that:

“… there is a possibility that in the next few decades, artificial intelligence (Al) may surpass human intelligence. If we do not have a thorough preparation, it will pose a challenge to humanity's ability to control its own creations, thereby challenging humanity's capacity to make the process. master its own destiny and ensure the survival of mankind."

The report outlines a set of recommendations to support the introduction of an advanced European robot registration system, known as the Electronic Human system, controlled by an agency of the European Commission. Europe. The proposals also include the establishment of laws governing mechanisms responsible for possible damages, as well as the formation of a system for a code of conduct to regulate process of design, development, and interaction between humans and robots, specifically aimed at ensuring safety, privacy, integrity and dignity, as well as autonomy and data ownership.

Robots are being deployed in unprecedented numbers in factories as well as taking on delicate tasks such as personal care or surgery, raising fears of low employment and inequality. in terms of income and alienation of capacity. Some define this situation as the wake of a new industrial revolution. The reality is that robots already exist and we must learn to coexist with them.Like the European Commission, other countries are launching similar dialogues. These important conversations help us as humanity get the best out of the relationship between man and machine. Experts will be needed to monitor safety, privacy, integrity, dignity, autonomy, and data ownership. I firmly believe that TÜV Rheinland can be an important player in this new arena.