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Ethics and AI: a crash course

Walk in to any entry-level Ethics class and you’ll observe academic philosophers teaching their students three theories of what it means to be ethical:

  1. Utilitarianism: Does an action produce net good consequences?;

  2. Deontology: Does an action follow a moral rule? e.g. the Golden Rule: ‘Treat others how you want to be treated’;

  3. Virtue Ethics: Does an action contribute to virtue (whatever that means--blame Aristotle)?

Ethical practitioners, on the other hand, will be quick to tell you the world doesn’t work so neatly.

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