Tesla CEO Elon Musk is a smart man, and when he gives his opinion on something, it should be taken seriously. Musk believes that humans must not make artificial intelligence so powerful that they can create their own religion.
Can AI overtake humans?
Musk’s latest attack on AI came in repose to an article in VentureBeat, talking about a possibility of an ‘AI God’ by 2042. The article cited several experts in support of an ‘AI God’ including Anthony Levandowski, former Google self-driving car engineer.
“On the list of people who should absolutely not be allowed to develop digital superintelligence…,” Musk tweeted on Tuesday, referring to the article.
On the list of people who should absolutely *not* be allowed to develop digital superintelligence…https://t.co/reNZ50FGNC
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 24, 2017
Levandowski, who is highly involved in a court case between Uber and Waymo over the theft of secret information on self-driving technology, founded a religious startup in 2015, referred to as Way of the Future. Levandowski’s organization aims to develop and “promote the realization of a Godhead based on artificial intelligence and through understanding and worship of the Godhead contribute to the betterment of society,” according to the documents uncovered by Wired.
The VentureBeat articles feature another expert Vince Lynch, who believes there is “commonality” between AI and religion. In fact, Lynch’s company, IV.AI, showed a model where a computer could write new verses from the Bible.
The VentureBeat article concludes that such a scenario is highly likely, and humans would be responsible for that as they “trust and obey things that seem more powerful and worthy than ourselves,” like Google Maps, or a Google search. Also, many experts believe that AI will get better than humans in the next three to four decades, and once that happens, it won’t be a surprise to see many of us turning to AI for guidance.
Tesla CEO vs. AI – not the first time
It is not the first time that the Tesla CEO has raised a voice against making AI too powerful. At the ISS R&D conference in Washington, D.C. this summer, Musk noted that AI is progressing like a “tidal wave” and there is a need for a “government regulatory agency” to keep a check on the development of such technologies. In August, Musk even signed an open letter to the United Nations, asking them to take necessary actions against the creation of killer robots.
Then last month, the Tesla CEO noted that efforts from countries to prove their “AI superiority” could be the “most likely cause” of a third world war. This was in response to the comment by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who said that the country which becomes the global leader in AI would “become the ruler of the world.” At the time, Musk tweeted “China, Russia, soon all countries w strong computer science. Competition for AI superiority at national level most likely cause of WW3 imo.”
May be initiated not by the country leaders, but one of the AI's, if it decides that a prepemptive strike is most probable path to victory
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 4, 2017
Musk even suggested a possibility that war could be automated, or at least triggered by AI. Responding to a Twitter user last month, Musk said, “May be initiated not by the country leaders, but one of the AI’s if it decides that a prepemtive (sic) strike is the most probable path to victory.”