The Peaceful Use of Robots

…is not limited to certain applications like search and rescue, or assistance in fire-fighting. A more profound effect of increasing peace could probably be realized by using robotics and automation technology for providing the basic needs of life for everyone. A recent study by Randall Akee, Emilia Simeonova, E. Jane Costello, and William Copeland showed in quantitative detail the positive effects of a rise of unearned income to the personal development of children in poor households of an Indian reservation in the USA.

The only dark spot in this example is the source of the extra income: It resulted from the profits of a casino run by members of the Cherokee tribe. Gambling does not seem to provide a sustainable path to a future of peace and social justice, as little as exploiting the reserves of fossil fuels like oil and coal. At least, it is a good first step into the right direction to distribute the profits from these businesses equally, like they do with the Government Pension Fund in Norway, too.

A next step could and should be to use robotics and automation as a common resource that works for everybody, thereby liberating human work to become a means of personal expression and development again instead of being just a job and a necessary evil to earn for a living.

On The Way To A Peaceful Future

… US congress recently took the wrong way by granting US firms the right to own and sell natural resources they mine from asteroids and other celestial bodies, as Gbenga Oduntan, University of Kent, criticizes in this commentary:

Who owns space?

That certainly relates to the peaceful use of robots, since they will always be the first when it comes to exploring and settling outer space.

We should always be aware of the historically unique opportunity that we have: It was never so easy to discontinue wrong social practices as it would be on other heavenly bodies where we can make a new start, based on justice and equality. In the first space settlements all the essentials of life will almost certainly provided for free, produced by robots, like breathing air, water, and food. Why not keep that as a social principle — and use it as a model for the future on Earth?