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Sophia: An African Journal of Philosophy

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Ethico-epistemological implications of artificial intelligence for humanity

Cardinal IC Ihejirika

Abstract


The externalization of man‟s rational capacities to robots and computers, which renders machines a semblance of man through the process of programming and simulation, overcomes human frailties. This has since the last two centuries become the  profoundest achievements of Cybernetics and Artificial Intelligence (AI). The celebrated efficiency of these techno-scientific  products in outdoing human persons in assignments previously reserved for man such as:  translations, warfare and  industry raises the level of unemployment and comes with an epistemological challenge of man‟s intelligence. Not only does  artificial intelligence threaten epistemological enquiries as presently constituted, these machines are also incapable of any  moral responsibility for their actions. Having realized that Artificial Intelligence if left unchecked constitutes a threat to human  dignity and personhood and could even terminate the very humanity it seeks to assist, many philosophers now raise questions  suchas: Are intelligent agents capable of „man-type‟ self-reflective consciousness and rationality? Can AI.truly enjoy the same  status with man? Can moral responsibility be ascribed to them? How should humanity treat and at its safeguard, these new  automated members of our community? These humanistic concerns inform our present research, which primarily highlights the  moral and epistemological implications of AI. on humanity. We argued for a re-direction of AI. research and suggested a  humanization of Artificial Intelligence that cloaks technoscientific innovations with humanistic life jackets for man‟s preservation. The textual analysis method is adopted for this research.


Key words: Ethics, Epistemology, Artificial Intelligence, Humanity.




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