AI Summit: Above-zero chance Artificial Intelligence will kill us, says Elon Musk

At the AI Summit being held in the UK, Tesla CEO Elon Musk reiterated his firm belief that AI could annihilate humanity.

| Updated on: Nov 01 2023, 22:28 IST
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Elon Musk at the AI Safety Summit 2023 at Bletchley Park in Bletchley, UK, on Wednesday, Nov. 1, 2023. (Bloomberg)

Tesla CEO and 'X' owner, Elon Musk said on Wednesday that Artificial Intelligence (AI) could endanger the existence of human civilisation. "There is some chance, above zero, that AI will kill us all. I think it's slow but there is some chance. I think this also concerns the fragility of human civilization. If you study history, you will realise that every civilisation has a sort of lifespan," he said.

His remarks came during a media interaction as he arrived to attend the United Kingdom hosted world's first global Artificial Intelligence (AI) Safety Summit.

Moreover, Musk was also seen having conversations with some of the participants at the summit.

Earlier, a day before attending the AI summit, Musk appeared on comedian Joe Rogan's podcast, in which he that artificial intelligence (AI), if programmed by people in the "environmental movement", may lead to the extinction of humanity.

In the podcast, he said, "Actually, what I think the biggest danger is for AI is that if AI is implicitly programmed, I don't think they explicitly but implicitly programmed with values that led to the destruction of downtown San Francisco. And a bunch of these AI companies are in San Francisco or in the San Francisco Bay Area. Then you could implicitly program an AI to believe that extinction of humanity is what it should try to do."

He added, "I think the most likely outcome to be specific about it is a good outcome, most likely a good outcome. But it's not for sure. So i think we're to be careful how we program the eye and make sure that it is not accidentally antihuman."

Moreover, the social media company Meta President said, "I'm looking forward to attending the AI Safety Summit in the UK this week. I hope we spend as much time as possible developing much-needed solutions to current problems - for example, on the transparency and detectability of AI-generated content."

He added, "not just debating speculative future risks about AI models that currently do not exist, and may never possess the autonomy and agency that some people fear."

The summit underway in UK will see a convergence of governments, academia and companies working in artificial intelligence to debate and identify risks, opportunities and the "need for international collaboration, before highlighting consensus on the scale, importance and urgency for AI opportunities" a statement by the British High Commission read.

Moreover, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has said that he will do a live conversation with Elon Musk on X after the AI summit.

PM Sunak posted on X, "In conversation with @elonmusk. After the AI Safety Summit, Thursday night on @x."

The summit aims to put light on the transformative benefits that AI technology can offer, putting a predominant focus on "education and areas for international research collaborations".

Representatives from The Alan Turing Institute, The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the Ada Lovelace Institute are also among the groups confirmed to attend.

Prime Minister Sunak had last week stated that the summit will focus on understanding the risks such as potential threats to national security including the dangers a loss of control the technology could bring.

On the agenda are discussions around issues likely to impact society, such as election disruption and erosion of social trust.

According to government estimates, the UK already employs over 50,000 people in the AI sector and contributes 3.7 billion pounds to its economy annually. Michelle Donelan will be joined by members of the UK's Frontier AI Taskforce - including its Chair, Ian Hogarth. The task force was launched earlier this year with an aim to evaluate the risks of frontier AI models (generative language models of AI).

Additionally, on the first day of the Summit, Union Minister of State Rajeev Chandrasekhar participated the AI summit and conveyed India's thoughts on AI.

On the second day of the summit, Chandrasekhar will contribute to discussions regarding the establishment of a collaborative framework for AI among like-minded nations. He will shed light on India's perspective concerning AI risks in areas such as disinformation and electoral security. 

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First Published Date: 01 Nov, 22:27 IST