Elon Musk CEO of SpaceX, Space Exploration Technologies Corporation, American aerospace manufacturer and space transport services company, has added his name to an open letter to the UN saying robotic weapons of war could be used by terrorists and despots in the near future. Musk is known for clashing with Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg on this very subject describing Zuckerberg as being ignorant of the danger such weapons posed.

Other notables in the field of AI (Artificial Intelligence) have also signed the letter agreeing with Musk's horrifying vision of a Terminator-like future.

Musk stated that "Lethal autonomous weapons threaten to become the third revolution in warfare" and also putting his signature to the letter is Google's Mustafa Suleyman Co-Founder of Deep Mind. The letter points out that developing such weapons like automated tanks, drones, warships, machine guns etc could lead to a new arms race.

116 specialists from 26 nations have also signed the letter but how the United Nations will respond to the letter cannot be known at this time.

BAE Systems already working on AI weapons

Well-known defence contractor British company Bae Systems are already working on automated weapons for the British Armed Forces. So in a sense, tomorrow is already here and there are already robots used by the British Army to defuse bombs.

Also, drones operated by remote controllers have become a terror weapon in themselves costing many a Taliban, AQ, or IS fighter their lives .

The fact though that such weapons could fall into the hands of terrorists, enemy nations or be developed by them, is a sobering thought. As technology gets more sophisticated as the years go by armed warfare could end up solely being about self-reliant weapons with very little human control.

Terminator future

Stephen Hawking well known for his views on alien contact with humankind, which in his opinion could end up with us being wiped out by a more advanced race, has also made his views known about AI. Describing a nightmare scenario where humans are exterminated by intelligent machines certainly, makes one think.

This extermination or replacement of human beings could be either by warfare like The Terminator franchise or the mass sidelining of humans in traditional industries including as described in this article the armed forces.

Technology has always played a part in warfare whether it be gunpowder or the introduction of the machine gun or tank. These weapons of the future like the development of the atomic bomb will increase our power of destruction to even more horrific proportions if left unchecked.