With the ever increasing capabilities of robots and artificial intelligences, I've been wondering. At what point does a robot stop being a device you can just turn off and dismantle and start being an entity that deserves rights?
This issue was explored several times in Trek, such as "The Measure of a Man," but I'd like to look at it from a real world point of view.
How will we be able to tell when a computer becomes a conscious entity, even if it is not self aware? Will they have any legal rights?