The Internet of (Artificially Intelligent) Bodies
This talk introduces the ongoing progression of the Internet of Things (IoT) into the Internet of Bodies (IoB)—a network of human bodies whose integrity and functionality rely at least in part on the Internet and related technologies, such as artificial intelligence. IoB devices will evidence the same categories of legacy security flaws that have plagued IoT devices. However, unlike most IoT, IoB technologies will directly, physically harm human bodies—a set of harms courts, legislators, and regulators will deem worthy of legal redress. As such, IoB will herald the arrival of (some forms of) corporate software liability and a new legal and policy battle over the integrity of the human body and mind. Yet, the challenges of IoB are not purely legal in nature. The social integration of IoB will also not be seamless. As bits and bodies meld and as human flesh becomes permanently entwined with hardware, software, and algorithms, IoB will test our norms and values as a society. In particular, it will challenge notions of human autonomy and self-governance. Legal scholars have traditionally considered Kantian autonomy as the paradigmatic lens for legal determinations impacting the human body. However, IoB threatens to undermine a fundamental precondition of Kantian autonomy—Kantian heautonomy. Damaged heautonomy renders both Kantian autonomy and deliberative democracy potentially compromised.
As such, this talk argues that safeguarding heautonomy should constitute the animating legal principle for governance of IoB bodies. It concludes by offering a sliding scale of “technohumanity” as a framework for the legal and policy discussion of what it means to be “human” in an age where bodies are the “things” connected to the Internet.
Matwyshyn, Andrea M., The Internet of Bodies (January 1, 2018). William & Mary Law Review, Vol. 61, No. 1, 2019. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3452891.
Dr. Andrea M. Matwyshyn is an academic and author whose work focuses on the intersection of technology design, innovation policy, and law, particularly information security/ »cybersecurity, » artificial intelligence/machine learning, consumer privacy, intellectual property, health technology, technology competition, and workforce pipeline policy. Professor Matwyshyn is a (tenured full) professor in the law school and engineering school at Penn State, the Associate Dean of Innovation at Penn State Law (University Park), and the founding director of the Penn State PILOT Lab (Policy Innovation Lab of Tomorrow), an interdisciplinary technology policy lab. She is also a faculty affiliate of the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School and a Senior Fellow of the Cyber Statecraft Initiative at the Atlantic Council’s Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security. In 2019-2020, she is a Fellow of the John W. Kluge Center in the Library of Congress.