Army of None: Autonomous Weapons and the Future of War

  • 13h 21m 10s
  • Paul Scharre
  • Recorded Books, Inc.
  • 2018

Paul Scharre, a Pentagon defense expert and former U.S. Army Ranger, explores what it would mean to give machines authority over the ultimate decision of life or death. Scharre's far-ranging investigation examines the emergence of autonomous weapons, the movement to ban them, and the legal and ethical issues surrounding their use. He spotlights artificial intelligence in military technology, spanning decades of innovation from German noise-seeking Wren torpedoes in World War II - antecedents of today's homing missiles - to autonomous cyber weapons, submarine-hunting robot ships, and robot tank armies.

Through interviews with defense experts, ethicists, psychologists, and activists, Scharre surveys what challenges might face "centaur warfighters" on future battlefields, which will combine human and machine cognition. We've made tremendous technological progress in the past few decades, but we have also glimpsed the terrifying mishaps that can result from complex automated systems - such as when advanced F-22 fighter jets experienced a computer meltdown the first time they flew over the International Date Line.

In this Audiobook

  • 1. The Coming Swarm: The Military Robotics Revolution
  • 2. The Terminator and the Roomba: What is Autonomy?
  • 3. Machines That Kill: What is an Autonomous Weapon?
  • 4. The Future Being Built Today: Autonomous Missiles, Drones, and Robot Swarms
  • 5. Inside the Puzzle Palace: Is the Pentagon Building Autonomous Weapons?
  • 6. Crossing the Threshold: Approving Autonomous Weapons
  • 7. World War R: Robotic Weapons around the World
  • 8. Garage Bots: DIY Killer Robots
  • 9. Robots Run Amok: Failure in Autonomous Systems
  • 10. Command and Decision: Can Autonomous Weapons Be Used Safely?
  • 11. Black Box: The Weird, Alien World of Deep Neural Networks
  • 12. Failing Deadly: The Risk of Autonomous Weapons
  • 13. Bot vs. Bot: An Arms Race in Speed
  • 14. The Invisible War: Autonomy in Cyberspace
  • 15. “Summoning the Demon”: The Rise of Intelligent Machines
  • 16. Robots on Trial: Autonomous Weapons and the Laws of War
  • 17. Soulless Killers: The Morality of Autonomous Weapons
  • 18. Playing with Fire: Autonomous Weapons and Stability
  • 19. Centaur Warfighters: Humans + Machines
  • 20. The Pope and the Crossbow: The Mixed History of Arms Control
  • 21. Are Autonomous Weapons Inevitable?: The Search for Lethal Laws of Robotics