This paper combines the good regulator theorem with the law of requisite variety and seven other requisites that are necessary and sufficient for a cybernetic regulator to be effective and ethical. The ethical regulator theorem provides a basis for systematically evaluating and improving the adequacy of existing or proposed designs for systems that make decisions that can have ethical consequences; regardless of whether the regulators are humans, machines, cyberanthropic hybrids, organizations, or government institutions. The theorem is used to define an ethical design process that has potentially far-reaching implications for society. A six-level framework is proposed for classifying cybernetic and superintelligent systems, which highlights the existence of a possibility-space bifurcation in our future time-line. The implementation of “super-ethical” systems is identified as an urgent imperative for humanity to avoid the danger that superintelligent machines might lead to a technological dystopia. It is proposed to define third-order cybernetics as the cybernetics of ethical systems. Concrete actions, a grand challenge, and a vision of a super-ethical society are proposed to help steer the future of the human race and our wonderful planet towards a realistically achievable minimum viable cyberanthropic utopia.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited