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It seems natural to think that the same prudential and ethical reasons for mutual respect and tolerance that one has vis-à-vis other human persons would hold toward newly encountered paradigmatic but nonhuman biological persons. One also tends to think that they would have similar reasons for treating we humans as creatures that count morally in our own right. This line of thought transcends biological boundaries-namely, with regard to artificially (super)intelligent persons-but is this a safe assumption? The issue concerns ultimate moral significance: the significance possessed by human persons, persons from other planets, and hypothetical nonorganic persons in the form of artificial intelligence (AI). This article investigates why our possible relations to AI persons could be more complicated than they first might appear, given that they might possess a radically different nature to us, to the point that civilized or peaceful coexistence in a determinate geographical space could be impossible to achieve.

Original publication

DOI

10.1017/S0963180115000559

Type

Journal article

Journal

Camb Q Healthc Ethics

Publication Date

04/2016

Volume

25

Pages

250 - 261

Keywords

artificial intelligence, humanity, moral significance, motivation, nature, personhood, survival, Artificial Intelligence, Bioethics, Humans, Moral Obligations, Morals, Personhood, Social Responsibility, Value of Life