As I explore the Bristol Robotics Laboratory, I realise that each glass-partitioned wall surrounds another ethical dilemma. The drones, so helpful when monitoring climate change. Tiny swarming “kilobots”, inspired by ants, modelling future ideas for cancer treatment. The too-realistic human head, with its soft skin and unfinished skull. Here there is a feeling of scholarly possibility, fuelled by earringed men, large coffee cups. In one cubicle, knee-height Nao robots feature in an experiment in which Professor Alan Winfield,part of a British Standards Institute working group on robot ethics, asks: “Can we teach a robot to be good? But when the research goes public and outgrows this hangar-sized lab, each robot will inevitably be reshaped depending on who acquires it.