Saturday, February 24, 2024

OpenAI CEO Warns That ‘Societal Misalignments’ Could Make Artificial Intelligence Dangerous

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DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The CEO of ChatGPT-maker OpenAI said Tuesday that the dangers that keep him awake at night regarding artificial intelligence are the “very subtle societal misalignments” that could make the systems wreak havoc.

“There’s some things in there that are easy to imagine where things really go wrong. And I’m not that interested in the killer robots walking on the street direction of things going wrong,” Altman said. “I’m much more interested in the very subtle societal misalignments where we just have these systems out in society and through no particular ill intention, things just go horribly wrong.”

However, Altman stressed that the AI industry, like OpenAI, shouldn’t be in the driver’s seat when it comes to making regulations governing the industry.

“We’re still in the stage of a lot of discussion. So there’s you know, everybody in the world is having a conference. Everyone’s got an idea, a policy paper, and that’s OK,” Altman said. “I think we’re still at a time where debate is needed and healthy, but at some point in the next few years, I think we have to move towards an action plan with real buy-in around the world.”

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The UAE, an autocratic federation of seven hereditarily ruled sheikhdoms, has signs of that risk. Speech remains tightly controlled. Those restrictions affect the flow of accurate information — the same details AI programs like ChatGPT rely on as machine-learning systems to provide their answers for users.

G42 has said it would cut ties to Chinese suppliers over American concerns. However, the discussion with Altman, moderated by the UAE’s Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence Omar al-Olama, touched on none of the local concerns.

For his part, Altman said he was heartened to see that schools, where teachers feared students would use AI to write papers, now embrace the technology as crucial for the future. But he added that AI remains in its infancy.

“I think the reason is the current technology that we have is like … that very first cellphone with a black-and-white screen,” Altman said. “So give us some time. But I will say I think in a few more years it’ll be much better than it is now. And in a decade it should be pretty remarkable.”

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