Earlier, I lamented that even though Eliezer named scholarship as one of the Twelve Virtues of Rationality, there is surprisingly little interest in (or citing of) the academic literature on some of Less Wrong's central discussion topics.

Eliezer defined the virtue of scholarship as (a) "Study many sciences and absorb their power as your own." He was silent on whether, after you survey a literature and conclude that nobody has the right approach yet, you should (b) still cite the literature (presumably to show that you're familiar with it), and... (read more)

This is an excellent comment, and you're probably right to some degree.

But I will say, I've learned many things already from the machine ethics literature, and I've only read about 1/4 of it so far.

1Pavitra9yCiting the literature makes it easier for your reader to verify your reasoning. If you don't, then a proper confirmation or rebuttal requires (more) independent scholarship to discover the relevant existing literature from scratch.

A Brief Overview of Machine Ethics

by lukeprog 1 min read5th Mar 201191 comments

6


Earlier, I lamented that even though Eliezer named scholarship as one of the Twelve Virtues of Rationality, there is surprisingly little interest in (or citing of) the academic literature on some of Less Wrong's central discussion topics.

Previously, I provided an overview of formal epistemology, that field of philosophy that deals with (1) mathematically formalizing concepts related to induction, belief, choice, and action, and (2) arguing about the foundations of probability, statistics, game theory, decision theory, and algorithmic learning theory.

Now, I've written Machine Ethics is the Future, an introduction to machine ethics, the academic field that studies the problem of how to design artificial moral agents that act ethically (along with a few related problems). There, you will find PDFs of a dozen papers on the subject.

Enjoy!