“Hiii…” She was so scared that she could hardly talk. “They – they are loose. The robots. At the army base. Broken free this morning around eleven o’clock. Some computer problem, they say. Developed them too far… Gosh, I am so scared!”
“What?! Oh, it happened. We can’t do anything! They are too armed, and they are not like humans, quick witted they are too. I guess that the computer centers of the superpowers know how to program them peaceful, phone them some information that does that. But one has to be quick! Where is the center’s phone number? I might call them just in case that it helps anything…”
“Tuuut tuuut … Computer center, customer service, how can I help?”
“The naval base’s robots have turned loose. I think that they need some help in programming them peaceful. And quick!”
“Then it is the main programmer Johnson who could help. He knows the safety programs well.”, said the operator.
“Haloo.”, mumbled Johnson.
“A man in phone says that the robots in the naval base have turned loose. They need some help in programming them peaceful.”
“Ohhoh. That is a big thing... The robots there have an ordinary basic structure, so some of our information packages for the most usual type of army robots might do well. I will start the program right now and then we will need their radio frequency for a while. It is some on the reserved range, so I guess that if we send an impulse on all those frequencies, it will solve the problem in a few minutes. We cannot wait at all on a case like this, too big danger. So I will try this and we will try to follow the situation to see if there is still something to repair. Ohhoh. Thanks for calling!”
“Thank you so very much! Huh.”, said the operator.
Army Programming Unit is an old main section of the army’s electric maintenance (basic skills), development (possibilities) and security (application) division. When the computers developed enough to have a self-guiding mechanism instead of just preprogrammed functions, it became the task of this unit to provide the information that the computers need in a computer understandable form. The computers understand mathematics well, read some maps and have an elementary objective picture of the world (“human”, “animal”, “machine”, “town”, “goal”, “helping aid”, “healthy”, “wounded”, “group”, “individual”,…) and some objective thinking skills of a mechanical kind. Many truths can be told to the computer if they are just first put to a mechanical language.
For example computers have some elementary understanding that helps them to guide their own functioning. This is considered of extreme importance since it makes the computers moral, reliable and useful. For example it is good to treat each thing according to what it is like. That is the point in holistic objectivity, justice and carrying responsibility about the consequences of one’s actions. It is also useful to notice that a fully functioning optimized machine or a healthy being works much better than the same one as broken. Like fuel keeps a car going, answering human needs keeps us fully functioning.
It always makes sense to not to program a computer capable of understanding things but to tell it the same things so that it can understand them by oneself. That way one safeguards against programming errors and possible destructive goal settings. Even an elementary computer used for a minor task ought to have a world wide moral, since otherwise it could go ashtray, but with the world wide moral it cannot.