Opining about the future of Artificial Intelligence (AI) at the recent Brilliant Minds event at Symposium Stockholm, Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt discarded warnings from Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk about the dangers of AI, by claiming that both renowned individuals are not computer scientists.
Artificial Intelligence is getting smater throughout years ©BBN
We Are Our Own Enemies
During these past 5 years, the scientific community debated thoroughly to know whether we are prepared for the “Artificial Intelligence Era”, which has the potential to become the biggest event in the history of our civilization. Indeed, the Plasma Science and Fusion Center of MIT expect new technological breakthrough to reduce the effects of disease and poverty globally. How will Artificial Intelligence shape our life? What are its consequences in our society and can humanity coexist with superior artificial creatures? Artificial Intelligence should be monitored closely as it has the potential to change our lives forever. Elon Musk, the heart and soul behind Tesla generated lots of news from his comments on Artificial Intelligence (AI), including a comparison to nuclear weapons “We need to be careful with AI. Potentially more dangerous than nukes.”
Alpha Go’s became successful via its use of artificial intelligence (AI). In 2014, Google acquired the British start-up DeepMind to combine the best techniques from systems neuroscience and machine learning to build powerful, general-purpose learning algorithms. The computer program developed by Google DeepMind in London learnt how to improve the level of its games by playing millions of matches against itself. But the trouble with using games such as chess and Go as tools of technological progress is that we can never beat something that is consistently learning by using an artificial neural network. There is clearly a winner and a loser, but the outcome is unfair as the odds are not even. Indeed, this is a common narrative of human-machine interactions: a creation is pitted against its creators, aspiring ultimately to supplant them. As an example, science fiction is full of robots-usurping-humans stories, sometimes entwined with a second strand of anxiety: seduction.
Computers Are Becoming Stockbrokers
Not only Artificial Intelligence is expanding in the technology sector, but also in finance. Indeed, AI caught the attention of many wealth management and hedge funds with deep pockets. More and more, financial companies are relying on machines to do the job humans have done during decades. Machine learning is all the rage today. Present a trading system with enough examples of something you want it to learn – e.g. limit orders, sell and buy signals – and by pruning away the outliers, the correct result will emerge as a statistical probability and be recognised as the best possible match.
In wealth management, for example, some firms are turning to intelligent portfolio machines, which decide where to invest your money. These machines replace the traditional advisor, where you might pay up to 1%, here you get a portfolio management virtual advisor at essentially no management fee. To get started with Schwab Intelligent Portfolios, you answer a short questionnaire aimed at determining your appetite for risk and your investment goals. Algorithms then create a portfolio suited to your profile and manage it on a daily basis. Instead of simply crunching numbers, the machines are now making decisions. And that increasingly describes the rest of the financial system.
Potential Disaster to Humanity
As beautiful as it may sound, artificial intelligence may also destroy our society. Should we fear or embrace AI? Stephen Hawking has warned artificial intelligence could be the greatest disaster in human history if it is not properly managed. The world famous physicist said AI could bring about serious peril in the creation of powerful autonomous weapons and novel ways for those in power to oppress and control the masses. Hawking suggested AI could be the last event in the history of our civilization if humanity did not learn to cope with the risks it posed. But the cosmologist and professor also said AI could have great benefits and potentially erase poverty and disease. According to many experts, Artificial Intelligence could develop a will of it is own, which could be in conflict with the desires of humanity.
In short, the rise of powerful Artificial Intelligence will be either the best, or the worst thing, ever to happen to humanity. “There is no distinction between what could be attained by a computer and the biological brain. It therefore follows that computers can, in theory, emulate human intelligence — and exceed it”. As echoed by the words of Stephen Hawking, AI will either help us solve our hardest problems in health or climate change – or it will let loose economic disruption, autonomous weapons and machines that develop a will of their own, in conflict with humans.
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