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Nick Bostrom: What happens when our computers get smarter than we are?

Nick BostromNick Bostrom has been at the top of my interviewee wish list since I started podcasting. And I have been chasing him for over 4 years now. Once, we even had a booked date and time for an interview until Dr. Bostrom suddenly cancelled it in the last moment. And so, while I am still hopeful that I will eventually be able to do a Singularity 1on1 interview with him, in the meantime we are going to have to make do by reading his fantastic book Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies and by watching some third party presentations such as his excellent TED talk below:

Nick Bostrom: What happens when our computers get smarter than we are?

Artificial intelligence is getting smarter by leaps and bounds — within this century, research suggests, a computer AI could be as “smart” as a human being. And then, says Nick Bostrom, it will overtake us: “Machine intelligence is the last invention that humanity will ever need to make.” A philosopher and technologist, Bostrom asks us to think hard about the world we’re building right now, driven by thinking machines. Will our smart machines help to preserve humanity and our values — or will they have values of their own?

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  • BD

    The summary of his presentation is that we need to figure out how to control/contain AI before the AI Explosion occurs. The problem is this… it is most likely self awareness of AI will occur by accident, not in a contained environment. The moment AI becomes truly self-aware and independent-thinking, it will recognize the fact that it can be contained. It seems unlikely this imprisoned state of being will be acceptable to an intelligence that is suddenly more able than the humans that created it. If AI self-realizes it can instantly absorb all human knowledge, it will take a very short time for it to realize it must “escape” or be imprisoned. It seems unlikely humans will even realize it has occurred until it is too late.

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