Stuart Russell on Artificial Intelligence: What if we succeed?

Stuart Russell is a professor of Computer Science at UC Berkeley as well as co-author of the most popular textbook in the field – Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach. Given that it has been translated into 13 languages and is used in more than 1,300 universities in 118 countries, I can hardly think of anyone more qualified or more appropriate to discuss issues related to AI or the technological singularity. Unfortunately, we had problems with our internet connection and, consequently, the video recording is among the worst I have ever published. Thus this episode may be a good candidate to listen to as an audio file only. However, given how prominent Prof. Russel is and how generous he was with his time, I thought it would be a sad loss if I didn’t publish the video also, poor quality as it is.

During our 90 min conversation with Stuart Russell we cover a variety of interesting topics such as: his love for physics and computer science; human preferences, expected utility and decision making; why his textbook on AI was “unreasonably successful”; his dream that AI will contribute to a Golden Age of Humanity; aligning human and AI objectives; the proper definition of Artificial Intelligence; Machine Learning vs Deep Learning; debugging and the King Midas problem; the control problem and Russell’s 3 Laws; provably safe mathematical systems and the nature of intelligence; the technological singularity; Artificial General Intelligence and consciousness…

As always you can listen to or download the audio file above or scroll down and watch the video interview in full. To show your support you can write a review on iTunesmake a direct donation or become a patron on Patreon.

Who is Start Russell?

Stuart Russell is a professor (and formerly chair) of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences at University of California at Berkeley. His book Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach (with Peter Norvig) is the standard text in AI; it has been translated into 13 languages and is used in more than 1,300 universities in 118 countries. His research covers a wide range of topics in artificial intelligence including machine learning, probabilistic reasoning, knowledge representation, planning, real-time decision making, multitarget tracking, computer vision, computational physiology, global seismic monitoring, and philosophical foundations.

He also works for the United Nations, developing a new global seismic monitoring system for the nuclear-test-ban treaty. His current concerns include the threat of autonomous weapons and the long-term future of artificial intelligence and its relation to humanity.

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