AI Leaders Fear Extinction Risk from AI - Asiana Times


A group of top AI executives, including OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, along with experts and professors, have emphasized the urgent need to address the “risk of extinction from AI.” They have called on policymakers to recognize this risk as being on par with the threats posed by pandemics and nuclear war.

In a letter published by the nonprofit Center for AI Safety (CAIS), over 350 signatories stressed the importance of making the mitigation of AI-related extinction risks a global priority, similar to how we approach other societal-scale risks.

The signatories argue that the potential dangers associated with AI technology, if not properly managed, could lead to catastrophic consequences for humanity. They believe that AI has the potential to surpass human intelligence and could potentially lead to unintended and uncontrollable outcomes.

By urging policymakers to treat the risk of AI-driven extinction as a pressing global concern, the signatories are advocating for proactive measures to be taken. They believe that investing in research and development for safe and beneficial AI systems, along with establishing regulations and international cooperation, is essential to mitigate the potential risks.

The letter highlights the need for global collaboration in addressing the risks posed by AI. It emphasizes the importance of bringing together governments, industry leaders, researchers, and other stakeholders to collectively develop policies and frameworks that ensure the safe and responsible development and deployment of AI technologies.

Overall, the signatories of the letter stress the critical nature of considering the potential risks of AI and the need for concerted global efforts to address them. They urge policymakers to prioritize the mitigation of AI-related extinction risks and incorporate them into the broader discourse on global risk management, alongside pandemics and nuclear war.

During the U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council meeting in Sweden, policymakers gathered to discuss the regulation of AI, coinciding with the publication of the letter raising concerns about the risks of AI. Elon Musk and a group of AI experts and industry executives were among the first to highlight the potential risks to society back in April. The organizers of the letter have extended an invitation to Elon Musk to join their cause.

The rapid advancements in AI technology have led to its application in various fields, such as medical diagnostics and legal research. However, this has also raised concerns about potential privacy violations, the spread of misinformation, and the development of “smart machines” that may operate autonomously.

The warning in the letter follows a similar call by the nonprofit Future of Life Institute (FLI) two months earlier. FLI’s open letter, signed by Musk and many others, called for a pause in advanced AI research, citing risks to humanity. The president of FLI, Max Tegmark, sees the recent letter as a way to facilitate an open conversation on the topic.

Renowned AI pioneer Geoffrey Hinton has even stated that AI could pose a more immediate threat to humanity than climate change. These concerns have prompted discussions on AI regulation, with OpenAI CEO Sam Altman initially criticizing EU efforts in this area but later reversing his stance after receiving criticism.

Sam Altman, who gained prominence with the ChatGPT chatbot, has become a prominent figure in the AI field. He is scheduled to meet with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and EU industry chief Thierry Breton to discuss AI-related matters.

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