Maybe we are about to hit the great filter...
Pretty sure the day the terrorists (specifically the domestic ones) start building this kind of crap is the day public spaces stop being a thing.
This is unlikely to change much, even as autonomous weapons get easier and cheaper to make.
The reason public spaces are safe is because it's hard to randomly kill people in public spaces and get away with it
While you are correct that most people don't want to randomly kill people in public spaces a non trivial amount of people do.
It's only the thin slice of that small group that want to kill people and don't care if they live after that we've had to worry about to date, and we see them in the form of suicide bombers or that Las Vegas shooter from last year.
We will have much bigger problems when it's possible for people to kill large swathes of innocent people and have a high probability of getting away with it.
You have just described every war and oppressive dictatorship in human history.
A drone or a drone swarm is an incredible force multiplier that will allow individuals to commit atrocities and have a significant chance of not getting caught which will make enforcement and prevention exceedingly difficult if not impossible.
I hope, far in the future but not too far, wars are held among the stars with remotely operated or even autonomous starships battling over resources such as meteors or comets. It is in every nation state’s best interest to reduce the human and property cost of every battle.
The need for conflict will likely be forever a part of humanity. The need for death or injury, however, is quickly withering away.
It goes out the window when there is actual uncertainty about who might win. Unrestricted submarine warfare was considered a war crime for most of peacetime, but as soon as it became a crucial strategic advantage that might turn the tide of the war, both sides started using it. The atom bomb would probably have been a war crime if it had been the losing side using it; as it is, it remains controversial.
Once one side wins the war, they become the dominant power again, and can enforce a definition of war crimes favorable to themselves. Such an event actually occurred with unrestricted submarine warfare: Admiral Nimitz testified for Karl Donitz at the latter's war crimes trial, because had unrestricted submarine warfare remained a war crime, the U.S. would have been guilty of it too.
These are all gross violations of both the spirit and letter of international 'law', and was done by the most powerful country in the world.
Who can possibly believe war has rules that aren't completely ignored? Do people just ignore the horrific crimes committed by their own governments?
- US blows up various hospitals because "may contain insurgents"
- US blew up US citizen + his child without due process because "terrorism"
- US sanctions countries it doesn't like, causing civilians to starve/suffer/lack medicine
seems evident to me that one party doesn't really follow "the rules". how come they have a permanent seat at the UN security council? what punishment is prescribed for rule breakers? because it clearly isn't any loss of influence/prestige/sanctions/etc.
I have said this before, and this looks like a prime spot to say it again:
The only people who play fair are those who don't know how to cheat well enough.
If you are in a war and are in the lucky a situation that you can prolong the conflict without much negative effects, "keeping the game going" is in fact waging a war of attrition.
Even in a bi-polar conflict, the threat of mutually assured destruction helps to enforce official and unofficial rules of engagement. The Cold War demonstrated that quite effectively.
I mean, the proposal here is equivalent to saying "let's solve all our disputes by a deathmatch in Quake 3 Arena" - stated this way, it's more obvious that the only thing stopping a party from cheating is threat of consequences in the real world. And once you have threats and counterthreats, you may as well do away with the Q3A game.
Hell, it seems to me that in a way, we're already doing "conflict resolution through games". Geopolitics is the name of the game, and diplomats and politicians are the player. There's a full fluidity from the purely virtual threats, through sanctions up to trade wars.
many of these things are no longer true.
Yeah, you can kind of see the escalation tree. Inevitably, there's a point at which some book smart people come up with the idea to use AI techniques to have the murderbots protect their own reproduction capacity.
I hope everyone who decides to manufacture murderbots is wise enough to keep an "Off" switch of some sort.
So it never made 'sense' to die in a blaze of glory. Except for the immortality part.
It won't happen, drones killing drones will never be as effective a means of coercion than drones killing people. Human suffering is what makes war effective.
One side runs out of defensive drones. How good is their negotiation position? They would have zero power.
I don't see how the decisions are different from our current wars where humans carry the weapons.
What's not going to happen is X and Y agreeing to send their drones out into the desert or somewhere away from people to fight things out. War is the external application of a nation's monopoly on force - it just doesn't work unless that force is applied, directly or indirectly, against human beings.
You could call this a good thing or a bad thing, but I'm not smart enough to figure out which side is more likely to be true.
My point was that unless people change, the causes of war will remain.
“No fate but what we make.” -Terminator 2: Judgement Day
You know, maybe the Unabomber had a point there...
If US military succumbs to public pressure and stops developing autonomous weapons (purely hypothetical, never gonna happen), Russia or China will not, and we end up in a situation where the least moral actor has the most powerful and advanced drones.
There's a similar situation in eugenics/genetics and other morally dubious research areas.