Elon Musk and Others Call for a Break on AI, Cite 'Risk to Society'

More than 1,000 technology leaders and researchers, including Elon Musk, have urged artificial intelligence labs to stop developing the most advanced systems, warned in open letter that AI tools present “a grave risk to society and humanity”.

AI developers are “locked in an out-of-control race to develop and deploy increasingly powerful digital minds that no one – not even their creators – can reliably understand, predict, or control,” according to the letter, released Wednesday by nonprofit group Future of Life. institute.

Others who signed the letter included Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple; Andrew Yang, a businessman and 2020 US presidential candidate; and Rachel Bronson, president of the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, who established the Doomsday Clock.

AI powers chatbots like ChatGPT, Microsoft Bing, and Google Bard, which can carry on human-like conversations, create essays on an endless variety of topics, and perform more complex tasks, such as writing computer code.

The push to develop more robust chatbots has led to a race that could determine the next leader in the tech industry. But the tool has been criticized for creating incorrect details and for its ability to spread misinformation.

The open letter calls for a pause in the development of a more powerful AI system than GPT-4, the chatbot introduced this month by research lab OpenAI, which Musk co-founded. The pause will allow time to implement “shared security protocols” for AI systems, the letter said. “If such a pause cannot be imposed quickly, the government will have to step in and institute a moratorium,” he added.

Development of a robust AI system should proceed “only after we are confident that the effect will be positive and the risk is manageable,” said the letter.

“Humanity can enjoy a thriving future with AI,” the letter said. “Having successfully created a robust AI system, we can now enjoy an ‘AI summer' where we reap the rewards, engineering these systems for everyone's benefit and giving society a chance to adapt.”