On Intuition: Machine Learning and Posthuman Ethics

Keynote Address - "Digital <Dis>Orders" - 7th Annual Graduate Conference Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders"

Prof. Dr. Louise Amoore

Thursday, 17 November, 19:00-20:00

Goethe University Frankfurt am Main, Campus Westend, Building "Normative Orders", EG.01

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whether in Intuitive Surgical’s Vinci surgical robots or in the geopolitics of automated weaponry, drones, and intelligence gathering, machine learning algorithms and operatives are trained for future action via the patterns of ingested past data. What kind of ethics is possible in the context of the intuitive learning of a posthuman composite? Can this form of cognition and action be meaningfully held accountable? As Katherine Hayles has written, “what is lethal is not the  posthuman as such, but the grafting of the posthuman onto a liberal humanist view of the subject.” Thus, as contemporary legal cases proliferate, they persistently seek an identifi able human subject to call to account—a specifi c surgeon who made a mistake, a particular drone pilot or analyst who wrongfully targeted—who is often called the “human in the loop” of semi-supervised machine learning. Yet, machine learning is precisely changing the nature of what it means to be human, so that the errors of a neural net must involve an expanded and distributed sense of ethics. In this work I propose an alternative mode of ethics capable of responding to the intuitive learning of human and algorithm.

Louise Amoore is a Professor at the Department of Geography at Durham University. She researches and teaches in the areas of global geopolitics and security, and has particular interests in how contemporary forms of data, analytics and risk management are  changing the techniques of border control and security. Amoore has been awarded a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship (2016-18) for work on her upcoming monography, ’Ethics of Algorithm’. Her previous book projects include ’Algorithmic Life: Calculative Devices in the Age of Big Data’ (2015) and ’The Politics of Possibility: Risk and Security Beyond Probability’ (2013).

 

Presented by:
The Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders" in cooperation with Internet TBD and the University for Art and Design, Offenbach am Main


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