Elon Musk, others call for suspension of AI development

Elon Musk, chief executive officer of Tesla and a group of artificial intelligence experts have called for a six-month pause in developing systems more powerful than OpenAI’s newly launched GPT-4.

This call was made in an open letter issued by the non-profit Future of Life Institute which was signed by more than 1,000 people including Musk,citing potential risks to society and humanity.

According to the letter, there should be a pause on advanced AI development until shared safety protocols for such designs were developed, implemented and audited by independent experts.

“Powerful AI systems should be developed only once we are confident that their effects will be positive and their risks will be manageable,” the letter said.

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Microsoft-backed OpenAI recently launched the fourth iteration of its GPT (Generative Pre-trained Transformer) AI program, which has amazed users with its vast range of applications, from engaging users in human-like conversation to composing songs and summarising lengthy documents.

However, OpenAI has not accepted the request to comment on this call to suspend AI development.

Also, the letter explained potential risks of developing a human competitive AI system to society and civilization in the area of economic and political disruptions.

The letter further called on developers to work with policymakers on governance and regulatory authorities.

Co-signatories in the letter include Emad Mostaque, Stability AI CEO, researchers at Alphabet-owned (GOOGL.O) DeepMind, and Yoshua Bengio, AI heavyweights, often referred to as one of the “godfathers of AI”, and Stuart Russell, a pioneer of research in the field.

Meanwhile, the Future of Life Institute, according to the European Union’s transparency register, is primarily funded by the Musk Foundation, as well as London-based effective altruism group Founders Pledge, and Silicon Valley Community Foundation.

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