Bill Gates, Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking have all done their part in warning the world of the true power of artificial intelligence. All three men were actually awarded the 2015 Luddite Award, which is given by the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation.
Luddite Award is Given to People Who Stir Fear and Hysteria
Because of their honest assessment on the power of new technology, these three men have been called alarmists who spread horror. There were 10 total nominees to the prices, and all three received them after getting more 3,680 votes.
Luddite is a word from 19th century England, and it is used to describe someone who is opposed to advances in technology. This is hardly an appropriate denomination for any of these men. Bill Gates is almost single-handedly responsible for putting PC computers in homes, Elon Musk has made a revolution with electric vehicles. Volumes can be written on the impact Stephen Hawking has had on the world.
Artificial Intelligence Can Ruin or Save the World
None of these figures have been shy about their opinions on the potential of artificial intelligence. Elon Musk has publicly claimed that he believes AI to be more dangerous than nukes, and Hawking co-wrote an article where he expressed that there may come a point where AI can’t be controlled at all.
Musk and Hawking actually signed an open letter from the Future of Life Institute. The letter pledged that advancements in artificial intelligence would not be able to grow beyond human control. They later signed another later banning the use of automatic weapons that were able to choose and shoot targets without approval from a human. Gates has claimed before that he is in full agreement with their beliefs.
Unfortunately, Gates, Musk and Hawking Are Quite Right
Artificial intelligence is a lot more dangerous than people give it credit for. It could well exceed the control of humans. Soon enough, it won’t need it. We already see this in self-driving cars, which need no input from humans to work. Will machine win over man? Probably not anytime soon.
The truth is that Bill Gates, Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking are right on the money on the potential of technology. They are only encouraging caution.