World’s Top Scientists Caution Against Artificial Intelligence

Top artificial intelligence experts from different parts of the world have signed an open letter calling for researchers to be cautious and avoid potential dangers of Artificial intelligence, AI.

AI is a highly technical and specialised field where machines and softwares are made to simulate and exhibit human intelligence or even go beyond.

Experts said although artificial intelligence has the potential to eradicate disease and poverty, it must be carefully considered, as researchers must not create something that cannot be controlled.

According to the open letter published by The Future of Life Institute, a volunteer-run research organisation based in Boston, US, the potential benefits of AI are huge, since everything that civilisation has to offer is a product of human intelligence.

It added that it is however important to research how to reap the benefits of AI while avoiding potential pitfalls.

Those who have already signed the letter, in which experts describe AI as a disruptive technology, include Peter Norvig, Google’s director of research and David Parkes, Harvard professor of computer science, as well as Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk, both co-founders of DeepMind.

In an accompanying paper, the experts stipulate research priorities that describe the need to remain in control of any artificially intelligent machine, stating that, “systems must do what we want them to do” while others relate to the ethics of autonomous weapons.

The paper suggests that it “may be desirable to retain some form of meaningful human control over intelligent machines designed to kill.”

It also stress the importance of legislative efforts before autonomous cars become a practical and ubiquitous technology. “If self-driving cars cut the roughly 40,000 annual US traffic fatalities in half, the car makers might get not 20,000 thank-you notes, but 20,000 lawsuits,” the paper reads.

Musk, a technology entrepreneur had previously described the rise of AI as man’s biggest existential threat while Hawking also said the rise of artificial intelligence could spell the end of the human race.

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