Technological Dangers and the Potential of Human-Robot Interaction: A Philosophical Investigation of Fundamental Epistemological Mechanisms of Discrimination

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The ethical debate on social robotics has become one of the cutting edge topics of our time. When it comes to both academic and non-academic debates, the methodological framework is, with few exceptions, typically and tacitly grounded in an us-versus-them perspective. It is as though we were watching a soccer game in which our child is one of the players. The question of which team we should cheer for never occurs to the parent. By changing the vantage point to a radical phenomenological perspective, informed by Eastern as well as Western thought, this chapter tests the basis for this type of positioning with regard to HRI. It is argued that the process itself is an artifact with moral significance, and consequently tantamount to discrimination. Furthermore, influenced by Heidegger’s warnings concerning technology, this chapter explores the possibilities of HRI with respect to the accompanying technological dangers and opportunities. Finally, aiming for the very limits of the theory, I discuss the contours of a praxis facilitating being-with-robots beyond conceptualization. Basically, this mode of being, pertaining to non-technological HRI, bypasses Heidegger’s warnings, and potentially facilitates a certain kind of self-realization for the human involved.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSocial Robots : Boundaries, Potential, Challenges
EditorsMarco Nørskov
Number of pages23
Place of publicationFarnham, Surrey, UK, Burlington, VT
PublisherAshgate
Publication yearJan 2016
Pages99-121
Chapter6
ISBN (print)978-1-4724-7430-8
ISBN (Electronic)1472474317, 9781472474315
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2016
SeriesEmerging Technologies, Ethics and International Affairs

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