It is clear that self-driving cars will become a part of our lives in the near future. It can be stated with no less certainty that they will also face problems that are typical for ordinary cars with drivers. Already, with the help of computers, scientists are simulating how an unmanned vehicle will behave when, for example, a reckless pedestrian suddenly appears in front of it. That is, we are already talking about the ethical aspects of artificial intelligence.
Researchers at the Institute for Cognitive Sciences at the University of Osnabrück (Germany) have created a kind of scale for the value of living things and objects for automated vehicles. In accordance with it, in the event of an accident, drivers, pedestrians and children will be given priority in saving their lives. Animals and inanimate objects follow. This means that, in principle, individual ethical standards are quite relevant to the machine.
To create an "ethical" algorithm, the scientists put a group of volunteers in virtual reality, creating convincing scenarios for various traffic situations.
In particular, they were asked to drive through heavy fog, while meeting them with various objects, animals and people. The decisions made by the volunteers, or rather the signals from their brain, were recorded by the equipment.
The results obtained are extremely important. In the conditions of total robotization, machines, like people, must adhere to certain ethical norms and rules, otherwise they can completely get out of control.