[SIGCIS-Members] Some suggestions on the early history of the ethics of AI

M. Hicks mhicks1 at iit.edu
Tue Apr 24 10:55:29 PDT 2018

Hi Debbie (and all),

I'd suggest Safiya Noble's _Algorithms of Oppression_. Chapters of it have been excerpted around the web--in Time magazine and Wired--if you want to give just a small section to your undergrads.

I'd also suggest the article about CCM in the Atlantic by Sarah Roberts, which I use in my classes--it's important for students to understand how AI gets implemented and trained. Cynthia B. Lee, a computer scientist at Stanford is also working on these issues and may have some articles that would work for an undergraduate audience.

Then there's Meredith Broussard's new _Artificial Unintelligence_ and Virginia Eubanks's _Automating Inequality_. Simone Browne's _Dark Matters_ is useful since the history of AI is also a history of surveillance, relying as it does on categorization and data collection. Latanya Sweeney also has several good articles about the racial and gender biases that construct google search.

I also often have my undergrads read Alan Turing's 1950 article in Mind, and talk about how Turing's life and the context of postwar Britain affected his work. I find that giving them the context of early AI research (codebreaking, queerness) alongside the article really helps them recognize the stakes--and that so many of the "new" issues we're confronting today aren't really new at all.

Also keep an eye on the work of Luke Stark: https://starkcontrast.co/book
And, within a year or two there will be a new edited volume called Your Computer is On Fire published by MIT Press (coedited by Tom Mullaney, Kavita Philip, Ben Peters, and myself) pitched towards undergrads and the general public that looks at the history of everything from Siri's accent imperialism to transphobic algorithmic bias.


--written from my phone while traveling, please excuse errors--
Marie Hicks, Ph.D.
Asst. Professor, History of Technology
Illinois Institute of Technology
Chicago, IL USA
mhicks1 at iit.edu | mariehicks.net | @histoftech
Programmed Inequality: How Britain Discarded Women Technologists and Lost Its Edge in Computing

On Apr 22, 2018, at 8:21 PM, Deborah Douglas <ddouglas at mit.edu> wrote:

I am appealing to the collective for some quick recommendations to help one of my undergraduates interested in the early history of ethics and artificial intelligence.  What sorts of articles or books have others used in their classes with undergraduates to help them understand the key issues and concerns?

Many thanks,

Debbie Douglas

Deborah G. Douglas, PhD • Director of Collections and Curator of Science and Technology, MIT Museum, Room N51-209 • 265 Massachusetts Avenue • Cambridge, MA 02139-4307 • http://web.mit.edu/museumhttp://museum.mit.edu/150ddouglas at mit.edu •  617-253-1766 phone  •  617-253-8994 fax

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