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Licensed to Kill: Autonomous Weapons as Persons and Moral Agents

The debate over the attribution of personhood to non-human entities is of an increasing concern to both academia and institutions. The intelligence, autonomy and efficiency exhibited by modern AI systems, raise pressing questions regarding the moral responsibility issues their use entails. In our paper we focus our discussion on autonomous war machines, as their actions, design, production and use cause philosophical controversies. [PERSONHOOD, 2020]

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Can we literally talk about artificial moral agents?

Presentation for the 6th Panhellenic Conference in Philosophy of Science | Department of History and Philosophy of Science, NKUA, Athens, Greece, 03-05 December 2020 |DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.13671.47520

Distinguishing between a quasi moral agent and a literally moral agent, I will attempt to describe those conditions beyond autonomy and behavior that must be met, in order to attribute the traits of a moral agent to an artificial intelligence system. Such a system, in addition to duties, could potentially have rights, obligations and responsibilities, coexisting with other intelligent beings or systems in a possibly revised form of social fabric. [NKUA, 2020]

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Artificial Intelligence: Life in the second half of the chessboard

Life in the second half of the chessboard is expected to be exciting and scary at the same time. New challenges and opportunities will soon give prominence to new masters of the game, new services, new products, new lifestyles –and we will all adapt and embrace these developments, making them an integral part of our daily lives, just about as we did in the past with cars, mobile phones and the internet.

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What is it like to be a machine?

The question "What is it like to be a machine?" refers to the subjective experience of a cognitive agent, that happens to be a thinking machine, consisting of microchips, transistors, cables, sensors etc. At first we may assume that the subjective experience of being a machine will be different from the subjective experience of being human, therefore a human cannot "experience" the world as a machine, neither a machine can "experience" the world as a human.

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Who's to blame when HAL kills again?

Most of us met HAL 9000 as the lead character in Stanley Kubrick's film "2001, A Space Odyssey", which was based on Arthur Clarke's screenplay and short stories. HAL, a Heuristically Programmed Algorithmic Computer –a sophisticated form of Artificial Intelligence (AI)– decides to kill the spaceship crew and gain control of the spaceship in which it was stationed, in order to ensure the success of its mission, when it realized it was under threat.

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Iron Man vs Aristotle: Transhumanism, the Limits of Human Nature and the Politics of Prescription Eyeglasses

When we talk about enhancement or modifying the human body, we often put forward the argument of the limits of human nature, and therefore, acts that violate those limits are judged negatively. This view, however, contains assumptions that lead to logical fallacies.

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The Algorithm of the Digital Humanism

According to Sartre, people experience a constant state of existential anxiety, because being "condemned" to freely define our own purpose, at every moment of our lives we must make choices that ultimately determine who we are.

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Why do we need philosophy today?

On the occasion of the World Day of Philosophy, here are some thoughts about the meaning, the reality, the remains and the role of philosophy today.
Starting with the question what would happen if the philosophers went on strike, indicate the role of language and the role of ideas in the way people, everyday giving meaning to the facts of their lives. The ideas lead people to decisions, laws, rules, principles, and attitudes. The ideas create facts and our world of facts arises from going astray ghosts of past ideas.

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Philosophy as therapy: Death and the meaning of life

A tiny virus, an insignificant particle invisible to the naked eye, came to suggest in the harshest and at the same time ironic way to humanity the fragility of life. In the ninth article regarding the philosophical discourse during the pandemic, some thoughts on mortality, existential anguish and the meaning of life, on the occasion of Simon Critchley’s article in the NY Times.

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Philosophy as therapy: After the end of certainty

During the pandemic, hundreds or thousands of lives were lost or at risk. Along with the pain and fear of death, people have experienced the unprecedented insecurity generated by the unknown and the possibility that the world will never be the same again. What do Hume, Popper and Wittgenstein have to say about the end of certainty? The errors of inductive reasoning, in the eighth article of the series on the contribution of philosophy to the treatment of irrationality, which spread along with the coronavirus.

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Philosophy as therapy: Godzillas in the mist

Conspiracy theories, irrationality, and the propagation of false news have created a tragicomic version of the scenery during the pandemic. What happens when science can't provide us with satisfactory answers? Why is the image of events in politics more important than the events themselves? And why do people believe in unbelievable things? Michael Shermer, science historian, provides the answer in the seventh article on issues of philosophical discourse in the days of COVID-19.

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Philosophy as therapy: The red herring argument

How did logical fallacies dominate public discourse during the global coronavirus crisis? False premises, arbitrary generalizations and diverting the discussion to irrelevant arguments are in the arsenal of those who try to convince the public of the righteousness of their own opinion, obscuring the truth. The "red herring" of Bernard-Henri Levy and incomparable "comparisons", in the sixth article of the series on issues of philosophical discourse during the pandemic.

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Philosophy as therapy: Aristotle and the communovirus

How did the public debate regarding the return to a lost sociability bring us back to Aristotle during the pandemic? What is the essence of Aristotelian communitarianism, and why is uniting people for economic gain or to deal with dangers not enough for our well-being? What does Sandel suggest about returning to the lost values of political and social life? The fifth article in the series on how philosophy contributed to the treatment of irrationality in the days of the pandemic.

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Philosophy as therapy: The society of the plague

How did philosophy contribute to the treatment of irrationality that prevailed in public discourse during the days of the pandemic? Why were Michel Foucault and Jeremy Bentham up to date again? What did Harari predict for the post-COVID-19 era and why should we be concerned with ethical issues related to biometric data? The new form of surveillance in the fourth article of the series on philosophical discourse regarding the global crisis.

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Philosophy as therapy: Kant in the emergency room

Why is it not self-evident that it is better to save five lives and let one die? What does a “fair” health system mean? Moral and political views on health with Kant as a starting point, in the third article of the series on the role of philosophy as a treatment for the irrationality that dominated public discourse during the pandemic.

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