SCT #7: Rita J. King and the Robots

In episode 7 of Social Change Technology we speak to Rita J. King of Science House, New York. Rita is EVP of Business Development and head of Science House Creative.

In the episode Ren Reynolds talks to Rita King about the work that Science House does to bring ‘hard science’ together with business. They touch on the range of Science House’s work from being a start-up incubator based in New York to outreach programmes bringing science education to children around the world.

One area covered in greater detail in the podcast is that of the actual and perceived future of robotics. Rita raises the issue of robots as a new source of possible technogenic disaster in the minds of media and the public alike. That is, the idea that robots may bring about some catastrophic global event – think the Terminator’s Skynet or the robot takeover in the Matrix or AI for popular science fiction interpretations of such a catastrophe.

Such notions have recently been taken up from various angles by academics such as Sherry Turkle, who has written about the ethics of the emotional bonds that humans may form with robots. At the other end of the spectrum a research team at Georgia Tech has been looking at military robots with the capacity to deceive.

All this has given rise to conferences such as the inaugural We Robot conference on legal and policy issues relating to robotics, held in Miami in April of 2012. It should be noted that academic communities such as those researching ethics of technology (See: ELTHICOMP and CEPE), law of emerging technology (see Gikii), and specialised research areas such as the ethics of tele-care have been researching this for some years.

In future episodes we hope to have more on the social, legal and policy implications of robotics. To make sure you catch it, you can subscribe to Social Change Technology on iTunes or via our RSS feed.

Featuring: Rita J. King

Rita is Executive Vice President of Business Development and head of Science House Creative. In addition to her work at Science House Rita is Resident Futurist at the National Institute for Aerospace (NASA Langley’s Think Tank). She is Founder / Creative Director of Dancing Ink Productions.

Rita has served as Innovator-in-Residence at IBM’s Analytics Virtual Center, a former Senior Fellow at The Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs and a current Senior Fellow at the Center for the Study of the Presidency & Congress in Washington DC.

Show Links

<< Episode #6
The co-creators: audience, artists & the future of music
All Episodes Episode 7>>
What’s social about social games?

Podcast music: “For the Horde” kindly provided by 100 Robots.

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