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Elon Musk Says AI Is More Dangerous Than Nuclear Weapons

Claire Reid

| Last updated 

Elon Musk Says AI Is More Dangerous Than Nuclear Weapons

Elon Musk has issued a terrifying warning about the dangers of artificial intelligence.

The Tesla and SpaceX boss Musk was speaking at the South by Southwest tech conference in Austin, Texas when he warned that that AI poses a bigger threat than nuclear warheads.

He told the crowd that there needs to be a regulatory body to make sure things are ran properly and to keep those creating 'super intelligence' in check.


"The biggest issue I see with so-called AI experts is that they think they know more than they do, and they think they are smarter than they actually are," said Musk. "This tends to plague smart people. They define themselves by their intelligence and they don't like the idea that a machine could be way smarter than them, so they discount the idea - which is fundamentally flawed."

He added: "I am really quite close, I am very close, to the cutting edge in AI and it scares the hell out of me.

"It's capable of vastly more than almost anyone knows and the rate of improvement is exponential."

Speaking about a regulatory body, he said: "I am not normally an advocate of regulation and oversight - I think one should generally err on the side of minimizing those things - but this is a case where you have a very serious danger to the public.


"It needs to be a public body that has insight and then oversight to confirm that everyone is developing AI safely. This is extremely important. I think the danger of AI is much greater than the danger of nuclear warheads by a lot and nobody would suggest that we allow anyone to build nuclear warheads if they want. That would be insane.

"And mark my words, AI is far more dangerous than nukes. Far. So why do we have no regulatory oversight? This is insane."


This isn't the first time the billionaire and flamethrower salesman has warned us all about the dangers of AI, last year he said he believes scientists only have a five to 10 percent chance of making AI safe. And has previously called for regulation, because it presents a 'fundamental risk to the existence of human civilisation'. Awesome, nothing to worry about there, then.

Speaking to his employees at his company Neurolink last November, he said: "Once there is awareness, people will be extremely afraid, as they should be... By the time we are reactive in AI regulation, it'll be too late."

And if that cheerful thought isn't quite enough for you, he also reckons that the super intelligence of AI will leave us like pets.


"Under any rate of advancement in AI, we will be left behind by a lot," he said. "The benign situation with ultra-intelligent AI is that we would be so far below in intelligence we'd be like a pet, or a house cat."

Is Musk implying house cats aren't pets? You're crossing a line with me there, mate.

Anyway, if you're interested on when all this is going to kick off so you can attempt to prepare yourself, Musk said he thinks there's a risk of 'something seriously dangerous' happening in the next five to 10 years. Perfect.


Source: CNBC

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: elon musk, Technology, AI

Claire Reid
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