Curriculum Guide · Courses
Law of Robots
Professor Edward Walters
J.D. Seminar 1289 (cross-listed) | 2 credit hours
Robots, artificial intelligence, and autonomous systems have long been the realm of science fiction, but they are increasingly a part of contemporary life as well. Computers fly airplanes, play Jeopardy, drive cars, trade stocks, and fight in wars. Autonomous systems are no longer a thing of the future, but a fact of modern life, and Moore’s Law suggests that these changes will increase not incrementally, but exponentially. This course will examine whether or when we need a Law of Robots to regulate these autonomous agents, or where it is more appropriate to reason by analogy and regulate these systems by existing statute, regulation, or common law. The course will examine emerging issues across the spectrum of tort law, property law, copyright law, the laws of war, laws of agency, criminal law, and international law. The class will not be a survey of existing law, but instead an examination of how to regulate emerging issues in law – how to extrapolate and reason by analogy, in robotics and beyond. Paper required.
Recommended: Property (or Property in Time), Torts (or Bargain, Exchange and Liability), Copyright Law, and Criminal Law.