Obligations to People We Don’t Know

One of the classic moral problems is the issue of whether or not we have moral obligations to people we do not know.  If we do have such obligations, then there are also questions about the
One of the classic moral problems is the issue of whether or not we have moral obligations to people we do not know.  If we do have such obligations, then there are also questions about the [More]

Chaotic Evil

As I have written in two other essays, the Dungeons & Dragons alignment system is surprisingly useful for categorizing people in the real world. In my previous two essays, I looked at lawful
As I have written in two other essays, the Dungeons & Dragons alignment system is surprisingly useful for categorizing people in the real world. In my previous two essays, I looked at lawful [More]

Ethics & Free Will

Azim Shariff and Kathleen Vohs recently had their article, “What Happens to a Society That Does Not Believe in Free Will”, published in Scientific American. This article considers the causal impact
Azim Shariff and Kathleen Vohs recently had their article, “What Happens to a Society That Does Not Believe in Free Will”, published in Scientific American. This article considers the causal impact [More]

The Robots of Deon

The United States military has expressed interest in developing robots capable of moral reasoning and has provided grant money to some well-connected universities to address this problem (or to at
The United States military has expressed interest in developing robots capable of moral reasoning and has provided grant money to some well-connected universities to address this problem (or to at [More]

IAI Video Debate: Is Integrity Still Relevant?

Is personal integrity still a valid idea or is a quaint idea from a bygone era? Pioneering thinkers debate this question in an engaging video on IAI.
Is personal integrity still a valid idea or is a quaint idea from a bygone era? Pioneering thinkers debate this question in an engaging video on IAI. [More]

Kant & Economic Justice

One of the basic concerns is ethics is the matter of how people should be treated. This is often formulated in terms of our obligations to other people and the question is “what, if anything, do we
One of the basic concerns is ethics is the matter of how people should be treated. This is often formulated in terms of our obligations to other people and the question is “what, if anything, do we [More]

Owning Intelligent Machines

While truly intelligent machines are still in the realm of science fiction, it is worth considering the ethics of owning them. After all, it seems likely that we will eventually develop such
While truly intelligent machines are still in the realm of science fiction, it is worth considering the ethics of owning them. After all, it seems likely that we will eventually develop such [More]

New Book from OUP: Causation

Causation: A Very Short Introduction is a new book by OUP as a part of their "Very Short Introductions" series. It covers the nature of causal connections and the controversy the topic generates.
Causation: A Very Short Introduction is a new book by OUP as a part of their "Very Short Introductions" series. It covers the nature of causal connections and the controversy the topic generates. [More]

Sexbots are Persons, Too?

In my previous essays on sexbots I focused on versions that are clearly mere objects. If the sexbot is merely an object, then the morality of having sex with it is the same as having sex with any other object …Read more »
In my previous essays on sexbots I focused on versions that are clearly mere objects. If the sexbot is merely an object, then the morality of having sex with it is the same as having sex with any other object …Read more » [More]

The Daily Owl 9-17-2013

But a man is not a thing, that is to say, something which can be used merely as a means, but must in all his actions be always considered as an end in himself. I cannot, therefore, dispose in any way of a man in my own person so as to mutilate him, to damage or kill him. (Kant)
But a man is not a thing, that is to say, something which can be used merely as a means, but must in all his actions be always considered as an end in himself. I cannot, therefore, dispose in any way of a man in my own person so as to mutilate him, to damage or kill him. (Kant) [More]