The advent of artificial intelligence (AI) has generated both excitement and concern among individuals, companies, and societies at large. While some predict that AI will revolutionize the way we live and work, others worry about the impact it could have on employment and society as a whole. The public launch of OpenAI’s ChatGPT in November has only served to amplify these concerns, leading to a growing conversation about the implications of AI development.
In a recent interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes,” Google CEO Sundar Pichai acknowledged that the pace of technological development has outstripped our ability to adapt as societal institutions. Despite this mismatch, Pichai remains optimistic about the future of AI, citing the number of people who have expressed concern about its implications as evidence that the conversation is starting in a serious way.
Dr. Marek Suchenek, Professor of Computer Science at Cal State Dominguez Hills, echoed this sentiment in an interview with Decrypt, stating that the benefits of new technology have historically outweighed the disadvantages. While some jobs may be lost as a result of AI, Suchenek believes that the Industrial Revolution created many higher-paying and more appealing opportunities for workers.
While machines may become more intelligent than a single person, Suchenek does not believe they will surpass humanity’s combined intelligence. However, he warns that AI has the potential for misuse, as unscrupulous developers could create malicious software for economic or political gain, or use AI to impose control over others, leading to permanent tyranny. As AI continues to evolve, it is important for society to be aware of these issues and consider its impact on society.
In a race to bring AI to the masses, tech giants such as Google, Microsoft, and Amazon have thrown billions into AI development, with both Google and Microsoft incorporating ChatGPT into their search engines. Microsoft has invested $10 billion in OpenAI, while Google has teamed up with ChatGPT rival, Anthropic, to accelerate the development of a reliable and trustworthy AI system.
As AI development continues to progress, concerns about its impact on society and the need for alignment with human values have come to the forefront. Pichai believes that the development of advanced AI requires not just engineers, but also social scientists, ethicists, and philosophers, emphasizing the need for a thoughtful and collaborative approach to AI development.
The impact of AI development is not limited to the technology sector alone. The recent announcement that Samsung is considering using Microsoft’s Bing as the default search engine on its devices instead of Google led to a drop in Google’s parent company Alphabet’s stock price. While the competition to bring AI to the masses is fierce, it is important for companies and society at large to consider the long-term implications of AI development and strive for alignment with human values.