Tech’s Ethical ‘Dark Side’: Harvard, Stanford and Others Want to Address ItZeinab
PALO ALTO, Calif. — The medical profession has an ethic: First, do no harm.
Silicon Valley has an ethos: Build it first and ask for forgiveness later.
Now, in the wake of fake news and other troubles at tech companies, universities that helped produce some of Silicon Valley’s top technologists are hustling to bring a more medicine-like morality to computer science.
This semester, Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are jointly offering a new course on the ethics and regulation of artificial intelligence. The University of Texas at Austin just introduced a course titled “Ethical Foundations of Computer Science” — with the idea of eventually requiring it for all computer science majors.
And at Stanford University, the academic heart of the industry, three professors and a research fellow are developing a computer science ethics course for next year. They hope several hundred students will enroll.