Bill Gates: Why Wouldn’t You be Concerned About AI

Bill Gates on the threat of AI: “First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though, the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. "

Photo Caption: In a Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA), Bill Gates was asked whether or not we should be threatened by AI. While he doesn’t think AI will bring trouble in the near future, he says that could all change in a few decades.

Bill Gates agrees with Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking: we should be concerned about the future of artificial intelligence (AI).

In a Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA) on Wednesday, the Microsoft founder was asked whether or not we should be threatened by AI. While he doesn’t think AI will bring trouble in the near future, he says that could all change in a few decades.

“I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence,” Gates writes. “First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though, the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don’t understand why some people are not concerned.”

Related: 5 Experts Who Think AI Could End Humanity

Gates’ stance on AI contradicts that of Microsoft research chief Eric Horvitz, who earlier this week said he doesn’t think AI poses a threat to human life. Here’s what Horvitz had to say: 

“There have been concerns about the long-term prospect that we lose control of certain kinds of intelligences. I fundamentally don’t think that’s going to happen. I think that we will be very proactive in terms of how we field AI systems, and that in the end we’ll be able to get incredible benefits from machine intelligence in all realms of life, from science to education to economics to daily life.”

Horvitz said “over a quarter of all attention and resources” at his research unit are focused on AI. The division’s work on AI has produced Cortana, which is a voice-controlled virtual assistant for the Windows Phone that will shortly come to desktop PCs when Windows 10 is released.

Gates’ theory is in line with what many experts believe. Hawking has said AI “could spell the end of the human race.” And Musk, speaking at a MIT conference in October 2014, said AI is the biggest existential threat to the human race. The Tesla founder has also tweeted that AI could be more dangerous than nuclear weapons.

Google CEO Larry Page has also previously talked on the subject, but didn’t seem to express any concern.




About the Author

Steve Crowe · Steve Crowe is managing editor of Robotics Trends. Steve has been writing about technology since 2008. He lives in Belchertown, MA with his wife and daughter.
Contact Steve Crowe: scrowe@ehpub.com  ·  View More by Steve Crowe.




Comments



Log in to leave a Comment

Article Topics

News · Media · Photos · Artificial Intelligence · All Topics


Editors’ Picks

FAA’s Recreational Drone Registration Struck Down in Court
A federal court rules the FAA's mandatory recreational drone registration violates Section 336...

Self-Driving Cars Approved for Public Tests in Germany
Germany passed a law that allows self-driving car tests on public roads....

Smart Exoskeleton Prevents Elderly Falls
The Active Pelvis Orthosis is a smart exoskeleton that recognizes in just 350...

EduExo DIY Kit Lets You Build Exoskeletons
EduExo is a 3D-printable, Arduino-powered kit for students, hobbyists and educators that...