The United Nations is urged by the world’s top artificial intelligence (AI) and robotic companies to ban killer robots or lethal autonomous weapons. These companies met at the world’s biggest AI conference in Melbourne called the International Join Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI). An open letter was launched by 116 founders of robotics and AI companies from 26 countries as the UN delays meeting until later this year to discuss the robot arms race. This letter is the first time that AI and robotics companies have taken a combined stand on the issue.
Only a single company in Canada called Clearpath Robotics have previously called for a ban on lethal autonomous weapons. Last December, 123 member nations of the UN’s Review Conference of the Convention on Conventional Weapons unanimously agreed to begin formal talks on such weapons and already 19 of these nations already called for a ban.
This letter states that these weapons threaten to become the third revolution in warfare and will permit armed conflict to be fought. Signatures of this letter include founder of Tesla, Elon Musk and founder of Head of Applied AI at Google’s DeepMind, Mustafa Suleyman and many others in various countries.