The Longform Society: Meeting #1: Robots
In our first meeting of the Longform Society, we read a selection of compelling, entertaining and occasionally terrifying pieces on the subject of robots and artificial intelligence.
Will humans have moral obligations to robots? Are we guilty of ‘origin chauvinism’ if we believe only natural phenomena can exhibit consciousness? And is this line of thinking a sinister cousin to racism? What’s the definition of moral agency with regards to driverless cars and lethal autonomous weapons? How might artificial intelligence mitigate human suffering?
The Longform Society draws out these questions – and explores the context in which brilliant writers have posed them – at this inaugural club session: a live event at the Wheeler Centre, also streamed live.
Meeting #1: reading list
· 'If animals have rights, should robots?' by Nathan Heller
· 'Robots at war' by Don Troop
· 'Consciousness in human and robot minds' by Daniel C. Dennett
· 'The great A.I. awakening' by Gideon Lewis-Kraus
Mel Campbell is a Melbourne-based freelance journalist, film and TV critic, and co-host of the fortnightly literature and culture podcast The Rereaders. Her first book was the non-fiction investigation Out of Shape: Debunking Myths about Fashion and Fit, and she’s the co-author of romantic comedy novel The Hot Guy due to be published in 2017.
Jeff Sparrow is a writer, editor and broadcaster. His most recent book is No Way But This: In Search of Paul Robeson. He writes a fortnightly column for the Guardian, is part of the Breakfasters team on 3RRR each week day morning and is also an Honorary Fellow at Victoria University.
Rafael Epstein is a journalist who has worked in Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Timor, Indonesia, Europe and the Middle East.
Sophie Cunningham is a former publisher and editor and the author of four books, including the acclaimed Melbourne.
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