A recent report published by the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee in the United Kingdom reveals that the government needs to rethink its strategy regarding the adoption of artificial intelligence and robotics. It’s reportedly not prepared to handle the legal, ethical, and social implications intelligent machines will bring to society. And while we’re a long ways off from real-world versions of C-3PO or even HAL 9000, the U.K. government needs to get ready nonetheless.

“At present, ‘AI machines’ have narrow and specific roles, such as in voice-recognition or playing the board game Go,” said Tania Mathias, interim chair of the committee. “But science fiction is slowly becoming science fact, and robotics and AI look destined to play an increasing role in our lives over the coming decades.”

Right now the intelligent machine industry is in its infant stage, with driver-free cars traveling highways, predictive text appearing on smartphones, virtual assistants helping consumers with small tasks, and so on. There’s no need for “sectorwide” regulations at this point, but the committee wants to draw up a commission to examine how recent and potential developments of artificial intelligence will have an impact on society. This commission will be carried out at the Alan Turing Institute. Read More