Elon Musk has expressed concern that the “environmental movement” may use artificial intelligence (AI) to cause humanity’s extinction.
He said that some individuals would utilize technology to end human life to protect the environment during an appearance on comedian Joe Rogan’s podcast on Tuesday.
He was commenting in advance of the UK Prime Minister’s meeting with him at the ongoing AI safety summit.
Many experts believe that these warnings are exaggerated.
Former deputy prime minister and Meta president of global affairs Nick Clegg, who is also attending the conference, stated that people shouldn’t allow “speculative, sometimes somewhat futuristic predictions” to overshadow more pressing issues.
According to Mr. Musk, his concerns that the environmental movement had “gone too far” were the basis for his remarks.
“If you start thinking that humans are bad, then the natural conclusion is humans should die out,” he stated.
“The annihilation of mankind will be AI’s utility function if it is designed by extinctionists. They won’t even find it offensive.”
Later on Thursday, Mr. Musk is scheduled to address UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak on his platform X.
Speaking at the conference are delegates from some of the most powerful nations on earth, including, surprisingly, China, which is becoming a major force in artificial intelligence.
Although China and the West have tense relations in many technological domains, Vice Minister Wu Zhaohui of China stated that the nation was looking for an open AI culture.
“We call for global collaboration to share knowledge and make AI technologies available to the public,” he stated to the attendees.
“Every nation has the same rights to research and deploy artificial intelligence, regardless of size or power. Increasing the voice and representation of emerging nations is important,” he continued.
Artificial intelligence is ‘too crucial’.
Demis Hassabis, the CEO of Google DeepMind, during the “Princessa de Asturias” Awards in Spain in 2022
At the “Princesa de Asturias” Awards in Spain in 2022, Demis Hassabis
Many individuals concur that AI has potential risks, even though few agree with Mr. Musk’s assessment of the threat it poses.
The co-founder of one of the largest AI companies in the UK, Google Deepmind, Demis Hassabis, warned against adopting the Silicon Valley motto of “move fast and break things” in remarks he gave before to the summit.
“It has been extremely successful in building massive companies and providing us with lots of great services and applications,” said Hassabis.
However, AI is too significant. To make sure that we comprehend [AI systems] and that we know how to use them responsibly and safely, a lot of effort has to be made.
He noted many possible dangers, such as the possibility that AI may produce false information and deepfakes and that malicious actors will purposefully abuse the technology.
conference on safety
At the UK’s Bletchley Park complex, previously home to the codebreakers who helped clinch victory during World War Two, some 100 world leaders, tech executives, academics, and AI researchers will be gathered over the course of the next two days.
They will participate in talks about how to minimize dangers and maximize the advantages of artificial intelligence, including the development of novel treatments and possible applications in the fight against climate change.
The summit’s main focus will be on the grave risks posed by “frontier AI,” or the most sophisticated types of technology that Mr. Hassabis referred to as the “tip of the spear.” Cyberattacks and the possibility of bioterrorism are among the summit’s top concerns.
US Vice President Kamala Harris and President Ursula von der Leyen of the European Commission are among the foreign representatives.
There has been considerable criticism that the guest list is dominated by US powerhouses like Tesla and X (previously Twitter) owner Elon Musk, Anthropic, Microsoft, Google, and ChatGPT inventor OpenAI. On Thursday night, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Elon Musk will have a live chat on X.
Some have questioned if this week’s pronouncements concerning AI safety from the US and the G7, in particular, overshadowed the event. However, Mr. Hassabis stated that the UK may still play “an important role” in influencing conversations.
“A bit sci-fi”
Gomez, Aidan, and Coherence
Cohere’s founder, Aidan Gomez, describes “Terminator scenarios” as a “kind of sci-fi”
Cohere’s creator, Aidan Gomez, traveled from Toronto to the UK for the summit. May 2023 saw his company valued at $2 billion.
Speaking of “kind of sci-fi,” he said he thought there were more pressing concerns than the “doomsday Terminator scenario.”
“In my personal opinion, I wish we would focus more near-term where there’s concrete policy work to be done,” he stated.
For example, the technology is not yet ready to administer medications to patients, as a mistake may potentially result in a fatality.
“We need to preserve human presence and oversight of these systems… we need regulation to help us steer and guide the acceptable use of this technology.”