This article that I found discusses how some of the employees at Microsoft are unhappy with Microsoft’s contract with the U.S. military. Microsoft is designing augmented reality gear called “HoloLens” for the soldiers to use in the field to give them a technical advantage. The Microsoft employees are unhappy with this because they feel they are helping to create something that is “designed to help kill people”. I can definitely see where they are coming from; even if it is for military, I wouldn’t like knowing that I created something that ultimately could have led to someone’s death. Also, it is only for the U.S. military right now; however who knows who could get their hands on this technology in the future. I think the technology is definitely good for military purposes and could give the U.S. military and it’s soldiers an advantage, but I also agree with the Microsoft employees in that I wouldn’t be comfortable making something that is “designed to help kill people”. It could also present an ethical issue, what does it say about your company if you are okay with creating products that are designed to help people kill or promote violence? It could also be looked at another way in the sense that; maybe the technology is actually helping to save more lives than it is helping to take. Maybe the technology could help a U.S. soldier take down a terrorist that was about to kill innocent people. Either way, I think if they keep this contract it could change the culture of Microsoft completely and a lot of employees might leave.
What do you think? Do you agree or disagree with the Microsoft employees? Is this practice ethical? Do you think Microsoft should keep their contract with the military? Do you think the contract is more helpful or harmful to Microsoft as a company? Do you think this technology is more helpful or harmful?