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30th May 2023

AI experts warn the technology could lead to human extinction

Stephen Porzio

AI risks

The risk of extinction from AI has been compared to “other societal-scale risks” like pandemics and nuclear war.

A number of major figures in the field of artificial intelligence (AI) have signed a statement warning that the technology could lead to the extinction of humanity.

The document was published by the research and field-building non-profit Center for AI Safety who said it wished to open up discussion about some of advanced AI’s “most severe risks”.

Issued on Tuesday (30 May), the statement reads:

“AI experts, journalists, policymakers, and the public are increasingly discussing a broad spectrum of important and urgent risks from AI. Even so, it can be difficult to voice concerns about some of advanced AI’s most severe risks. The succinct statement below aims to overcome this obstacle and open up discussion. It is also meant to create common knowledge of the growing number of experts and public figures who also take some of advanced AI’s most severe risks seriously.

“Mitigating the risk of extinction from AI should be a global priority alongside other societal-scale risks such as pandemics and nuclear war.”

At the time of writing, the statement has already received hundreds of signatures from AI scientists and other notable figures. Among them include Sam Altman, CEO of ChatGPT-maker OpenAI, as well as Dario Amodei and Demis Hassabis, the CEOs of AI companies Anthropic and Google DeepMind.

Geoffrey Hinton and Yoshua Bengio – often referred to as the ‘Godfathers of AI’ for their work in the area – also signed the document, as did Grimes – the ex-girlfriend of Elon Musk.

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