Last week the Obama administration unveiled a comprehensive plan to rebuild Afghanistan. Using more troops to fight the insurgency in the region is one strategy, but so is widening the use of drone strikes to target members of the Taliban and al Qaida. As a culture that comfortably resides in cyberspace, that uses robots, in one form or another every day, we are constantly toggling between two universes, one virtual, one real. But what happens when these worlds converge to make life and death decisions? The ethical questions that come with the use of robotics in warfare are ones that P.W. Singer raises in his new book Wired for War. Singer joins us to discuss the challenges of bringing combat into the 21st century.
"It makes us look like the Evil Empire in Star Wars and the other side look like the Rebel Alliance." —Author P.W. Singer on the U.S. use of technology in warfare
Unsurprisingly, P.W.Singer recently conducted an interview about robot ethics in Second Life: