The Godfather Of Artificial Intelligence Regrets And Fears His Own Work
by Trisha Leigh
It’s a true Frankenstein moment when the creator of some technology realizes, once again, that it will eventually escape their control and be used by others – both good and bad.
Geoffrey Hinton, who is one of artificial intelligence’s foremost pioneers, is having that moment right now.
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He has worked at Google for over a decade and even won a Turing Award, which is one of the most prestigious prizes in computer science.
In a recent interview with The New York Times, though, Hinton (who has now left Google) warned of the dangerous implications of his own innovations.
He also admits to regretting his life’s work altogether.
“I console myself with the normal excuse: If I hadn’t done it, somebody else would have. It is hard to see how you can prevent the bad actors from using it for bad things.”
He’s not alone. Recently, over 1000 industry experts signed an open letter calling for a moratorium on developing more advanced AI until we can get a better handle on what’s been created already.
Hinton considered his former employer a “proper steward” of Ai until last year, when Microsoft released its Bing AI search engine.
Now that Google feels threatened, they are rushing to develop an AI integrated search of their own.
It’s the haste that worries Hinton, as he’s concerned so many fake images and text will be floating around that no one will be “able to know what is true anymore.”
A larger concern, though, ventures into what is currently science fiction territory.
“The idea that this stuff could actually get smarter than people – a few people believed that. But most people thought it was way off. And I thought it was way off. I thought it was 30 to 50 years or even longer away. Obviously, I no longer think that.”
It’s more than a little foreboding.
I hope the people who can hit the pause button are listening.