Scientists, Lawyers Mull Effects Of Home Robots
Ryan Calo, a residential fellow at the Center for Internet & Society, is quoted in this article on legal issues relating to robotics:
Eric Horvitz illustrates the potential dilemmas of living with robots by telling the story of how he once got stuck in an elevator at Stanford Hospital with a droid the size of a washing machine.
"I remembered thinking, 'Whoa, this is scary,' as it whirled around, almost knocking me down," the Microsoft researcher recalled. "Then, I thought, 'What if I were a patient?' There could be big issues here."
As such 'bots become more sophisticated, they could complicate questions about product liability. Ryan Calo, a fellow with Stanford's Center for Internet and Society, pointed out in a recent panel discussion at Stanford Law School that the original manufacturer might not always be liable if a robot went haywire.
"Robots are not just things the manufacturer builds and you go out and use them in a specific way. Robots can often be instructed, they can be programmed, you can have software that is built upon by others," he said.