Free will is the supposed capability for all intelligent beings to be able to take their own decisions, which are not influenced by any other being or superior entity.
One of the most important philosophical debates argues on whether human beings really possess this capability or our destiny is settled beforehand. One of the best known paradoxes, which connects the concepts of both free will and God, asks the following:
If God knows everything, even that which will happen in the future, how could he have given us the capability to take our own decisions?
Interpretation in Computer Science
The concept of free will appears around the Artificial Intelligence scope. Until now, every machine created by humanity is predictable and functions exactly the way it has been programmed. Thus, no artificial machine created up until this point has the ability to act at will and make its own relational decisions, like a human being would. However, it’s probable that in the future this situation will change. Some novels or films have already presented similar circumstances (see I, Robot (film)).
The apparition of an artificial machine with free will would lead to the biggest breakthrough accomplished in Artificial Intelligence in history, as it would ask for an utterly different implementation to those seen so far. On the other hand, free will deeply relates to concepts such as learning, education and ethic and moral feelings, capabilities much more suited to a biological system than a computer system. Likewise, due to unpredictability of a being capable of taking its own decisions, the risks related to this machine would be very significant and hard to take control of.