According to US media, a computer scientist nicknamed “the godfather of artificial intelligence” has left Google to speak out against the technology’s hazards.
The New York Times quoted Geoffrey Hinton, who developed core technology for AI systems, as saying that advances in the subject posed “profound risks to society and humanity.”
“Look at how it was five years ago and how it is now,” he was quoted as saying in the Monday piece.
“Take the difference and spread it around.” That’s terrifying.”
Hinton claimed that rivalry among digital behemoths was causing corporations to disclose new AI technologies at dangerously fast rates, putting employees at risk and spreading misinformation.
“It’s difficult to see how you can prevent bad actors from using it for bad things,” he told the New York Times.
In 2022, Google and OpenAI — the company behind the popular AI chatbot ChatGPT — began developing algorithms that used far larger amounts of data than previously.
Hinton told the Times that he believed these systems were outperforming human intellect in some areas due to the volume of data they were analyzing.
“Maybe what’s going on in these systems is actually a lot better than what’s going on in the brain,” he told the paper.
While AI has been used to assist human workers, the rapid expansion of chatbots such as ChatGPT may endanger jobs.
According to him, AI “takes away the drudge work,” but it “might take away more than that.”
The scientist also expressed concern about the spread of misinformation caused by AI, telling the Times that the typical individual will “not be able to know what is true anymore.”
Hinton resigned from Google last month, according to the Times.
In a statement to US media, Jeff Dean, Google AI’s lead scientist, congratulated Hinton.
“As one of the first companies to publish AI Principles, we remain committed to a responsible approach to AI,” the company said in a statement.
“We’re always learning new ways to understand emerging risks while also innovating boldly.”
In March, tech entrepreneur Elon Musk and a group of specialists called for a halt in the development of AI systems to ensure their safety.
The publication of GPT-4, a considerably more powerful version of the technology utilized by ChatGPT, provoked an open letter signed by over 1,000 people, including Musk and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak.
Hinton did not sign the letter at the time, but she did tell The New York Times that scientists should not “scale this up more until they have understood whether they can control it.”