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Aspects of long-term autonomy of social robots and their potential impact on society

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Gesellschaft für Informatik e.V.


Robots emerge from simple working machines to more and more complex systems. Current systems are equipped with sophisticated learning techniques to enhance their application domain in a dynamic way. Robots are no longer limited to domains that are hazardous for human beings. Their power and diversity allows them to perform tasks which are impossible for humans. Further, inconvenient tasks can be assigned to robots. Plans exist to introduce robots to various new fields such as nursing and elderly care. The integration of robots into our everyday life will have a strong influence on society and arise new topics to public attendance. In the future, robots will be able to learn, behave, evolve, integrate and may possess their own consciousness. The scope of this paper is the description of the properties and aspects of such robots and a critical inspection on their potential impact on society. Three different fictive stories of autonomous robots in the future give insight to the possible integration of these new contemporaries of mankind. The first story deals with Rose and Brian Miller, two married robots who plan their future. A robot limitation law prevents robots from having an unlimited number of replica. Only the most superior robots are rewarded with additional replica. Ronald B1000 is a butler robot who's employer wants to replace him with a more sophisticated exemplar. While it is impossible for Ronald to let go of his job, he struggles on and on to meet the increasing needs of his master. The last story accompanies John 137, a robot worker who decides to kill himself due to his bad implementation.


Häselich, Marcel (2013): Aspects of long-term autonomy of social robots and their potential impact on society. INFORMATIK 2013 – Informatik angepasst an Mensch, Organisation und Umwelt. Bonn: Gesellschaft für Informatik e.V.. PISSN: 1617-5468. ISBN: 978-3-88579-614-5. pp. 1096-1104. Regular Research Papers. Koblenz. 16.-20. September 2013