Artificial intelligence
Experts have warned AI is discriminatingiStock

Robot platforms that make life-changing decisions are innately racist and sexist, according to computer science experts.

A report by the Telegraph noted experts highlighting artificial intelligence (AI) used to assess people in decisions, such as bank loans or university places, being discriminatory against women and non-white people.

One researcher noted to the BBC that the bias came from faulty data simply reflecting society's own inequalities, rather than working towards eliminating them.

"If you want to take steps towards changing that you can't just use historical information," expert Maxine Mackintosh said.

Noel Sharkey, Emeritus Professor of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics & Public Engagement University of Sheffield, told the Today programme that a large problem was the lack of woman in technical fields.

"We need many more women coming into this field to solve it," said Sharkey.

The warnings come as many more questions are being asked about the growing artificial intelligence sector, especially focused on how AIs will be programmed for certain decision making.

Earlier in August, a committee in the German government drew up guidelines for driverless cars that said the autonomous vehicles must sacrifice animals and property before endangering humans - and that decisions around human beings cannot be based around age, sex, race or physical ability.

The guidelines would mean a driverless car in Germany would have to treat a toddler the same as a pensioner.

German transport minister, Alexander Dobrint said: "The interactions of humans and machines is throwing up new ethical questions in the age of digitisation and self-learning systems."