Conference: ICRE International Conference on Robot Ethics 2015
Held at the Pavilhão do Conhecimento/Ciência Viva in Lisbon, and organised by the University of Lisbon Centre of Philosophy and the Instituto Superior Técnico / Institute for Systems and Robotics and the CLAWAR Association, this first iteration of the International Conference on Robot Ethics (ICRE) can definitely be called a success. With notable keynote speakers like Ronald Arkin (and his debatable arguments for the continuation of the development of Lethal Autonomous Robots (LAWs), an outstanding location and venue and a committed team of organisers, this conference certainly succeeded in creating a fertile ground for academic discussion and beyond. Certainly a conference worth recommending.
My own 2 cents to this discussion were added in the form of a paper titled Robots & Free Software, examining whether the arguments the Free Software Movement has put forward for the last few decades in the context of computers also hold up for robots (which they do).
Although unfortunately set to a time slot that coincided with the time I usually go to bed (-8h time difference), resulting in a rather sleepy Wilhelm, and although quite controversial nature, I believe the paper was quite well received and spurred a Q&A session that had to be brought to an end not by a lack of discussants, but by the session chair.
My pick for the most notable paper, because I believe it is committing a kind of cultural relativist / naturalistic fallacy: Bertram F. Malle, Matthias Scheutz, Joseph L. Austerweil, Networks of Social and Moral Norms in Human and Robot Agents.