Humans must ensure artificial intelligence, which is destined to become much smarter than people, remains “friendly,” according to an author and documentary filmmaker.
James Barrat, who wrote the 2013 book Our Final Invention: Artificial Intelligence and the End of the Human Era, spoke about the rise of the machines during an interview with Fox News host Tucker Carlson. Snippets of that interview for Tucker Carlson Today aired on Wednesday night.
“This is a big deal,” Barrat said after Carlson said AI has the potential to get out of control. “This is something — the late Stephen Hawking said the problem with AI is, in the short-term, who controls it. In the long term, can it be controlled at all?”
He referred to Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who has long warned of the dangers posed by artificial intelligence. “Elon Musk said we’ve let the genie out of the bottle. We may lose control of AI. It’s our greatest ‘existential threat.’“
In another part of the interview, Barrat talked about how AI is being taught to be more human, and it is learning to create its own AI.
“We have taught AI to master a lot of human abilities. AI will get better than us at artificial intelligence, research, and development. So what happens when AI gets better than us at making AI? See, our intelligence goes like this,” he said, waving his hand in an imaginary flat line.
“We are not getting — our IQ on average is not getting any higher. Machine intelligence is going like this,” Barrat added, gesturing with his hand an exponential curve. “And we’re in this curve somewhere. Once AI is programming AI and making better and faster AI, that idea is called the intelligence explosion. Then AI sets the pace of intelligence growth, not humans.”
The discussion also examined prospects for the future. Barrat said humans have “no reason” to think they are the “top end” of intelligence. “So the way we are headed, we will make machines that are much, much smarter than we are. Now — we have to make them friendly,” he said.
The interview is set to air in full on Fox Nation on Thursday morning.