Discussions of ethics tend to focus on matters of conscious choice: which moral rules to follow, or advice on how to approach moral dilemmas. But a hugely significant part of ethics concerns what is unthinkable. You might, for example, be strapped for cash, but robbing the neighbours is unlikely to be an option for you. That’s because, whenever you deliberate, you have already ruled out all kinds of unthinkable possibilities. Some because you can’t contemplate them, some because you’re genuinely not aware of them.
Which brings virtues that by their nature restrict thought and imagination into tension with the prevailing spirit of the internet which operates on the principle that everything should be viewable and thinkable.
via Aeon Media, 17 May 2019See More
Autonomous cars will be required to make value judgments which must be pre-programmed. What should we tell them to do? To understand decisions human drivers would make before determining the ethical decisions that cars should make, researchers crowdsourced the question by launching a game called Moral Machine in which players are presented with a version of the trolley problem. The results suggest that if billions of driverless cars in the future are all programmed to make the same judgement call, it may be a lot more dangerous for some people to cross the street than others.
The New Yorker, 24 January 2019See More
Courage. It’s at the heart of every important decision. Chris Hughes, co-founder of Facebook, published an op-ed in The New York Times outlining his concerns with the company’s size and influence, and why he wishes he’d had the courage to talk to someone at the company about them.
New York Times, 9 May 2019