Elon Musk and Jack Ma discuss AI at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference in Shanghai


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Elon Musk, the tech entrepreneur and Tesla CEO, exchanged views on-stage with Jack Ma, Chinese billionaire and co-founder of the multinational conglomerate Alibaba Group, over the risks and benefits of artificial intelligence.

"Does AI mean love? There's like a name, AI, it sort of sounds a bit like love?" began Musk to which Ma amusingly replied "Yeah AI...I hate the word AI called artificial intelligence. I call it Alibaba intelligence."

Both leaders had different opinions on the implications of the technology where optimistic Ma said that he didn't consider AI to be a threat, "I don't know, man, that's like, famous last words," replied Musk. According to the Tesla CEO, most people think of AI as a smart human but he said it's going to be much more than that. "It'll be much smarter than the smartest human."

He further highlighted AI's capability to be much smarter than humans by saying that "the biggest mistake that I see artificial intelligence researchers making is assuming that they're intelligent. Yeah they're not, compared to AI. And so like, a lot of them cannot imagine something smarter than themselves, but AI will be vastly smarter—vastly."

Jack Ma, meanwhile, credited Elon with having a vision about technology and said that he himself is not a "tech guy" as he's "all about life" and thinks that AI will open a new chapter enabling people to understand themselves better. "99.99 percent of the predictions that human beings had in history about the future—all wrong," said Ma to which Musk responded "Including that one?"

Talking about technology that's changing at an "incredibly fast" rate, Musk said that "it is outpacing our ability to understand it," and he wasn't sure if that was good or bad. He further commented on "humanity" being a "biological boot loader for digital super intelligence."

When asked by Ma about his curiosity for Mars, Musk said that he thinks it was "important for us to take the set of actions that are most likely to continue consciousness into the future....where are the aliens? This is the Fermi paradox. This is one of the most important questions. How come we have not found any aliens? There are people out there who think we've found aliens. Trust me, I would know. We have not."

Commenting on AI's role as a force for good in reducing work hours, Ma said that AI would help create new kinds of jobs that require less of our time. "I think people should work three days a week, four hours a day," and that in artificial intelligence, people would be able to live on for 120 years.

With the debate lasting over 45 minutes, the executives touched on education systems, disagreed over machines outsmarting humans and concluded that population collapse was the biggest problem the world faced over the next 20 years.

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Posts: 17   +6
Connecting human brains to a super intelligent computer will undermine the humans. Any super AI will control the humans while making them think they are making the decisions. It may be ok for non AI enhancement.

Musk is wrong, UFOs are real and they are controlled by aliens. If he is wrong about that, he is wrong about other things.
"I think people should work three days a week, four hours a day,"
This translates to people being paid for 12 hours of unskilled labor a week.
The historic failed predictions of the future have been when they said all these labor saving devices in the workplace would result in people having more leisure time, freed from hard work, but with even higher standards of living. At least that is what the pictures showed when they were selling the advantages of the industrial revolution.
AI is just the next step in the Industrial revolution, and leave it to a Billionaire to see the advantages of reducing his labor force.
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Tbh. I dont get elon. ok so the kool guy wants to explore space primarily inhabit mars. so he gots all this tech I.e space rockets etc. so we can agree that he's a tech guy-one whom is interested in science/technology. YET.......he fear A.I. and is hesitant on developing it or rejects it completely out of fear of the matrix-a reality created by no other than an A.I that projects a reality that isnt true in order to keep the humans in stasis so it can power itself forever. but the point is that elon is afraid of himself, not himself per se but as a tech giant it contradicts that existence. why because the very first intelligent life even if its artificial life on mars would and is already is A.I. I.e the mars rover program. of course these machines arent driven by super intelligence like officer k in blade runner but still its artificial in nature. I think Elon might need to change his perspective.


Posts: 279   +127
Is it just me or are the quotes from these two giants of commerce sounding like a couple of jo blogs having a few beers and speaking out of their asses?
Its the corporate equivalent of the misfits podcast
"It'll be much smarter than the smartest human."
Dogs do not think like humans.
Dolphins and elephants do not think like humans.
They are MUCH more similar to us than any machine can even remotely be.
Computers are programmed to 'behave' like humans, but that is purely programming by humans to emulate humans. That is nothing even remotely like 'Artificial Intelligence' that can develop into being "smarter than the smartest human".
A machine intelligence is either A) impossible using current approaches or B) will be a VERY alien intelligence, not relating to us at all in any way.
AI will NOT happen by accident, but in the meantime, the software will continue to improve and more jobs will be replaced or incrementally simplified, reducing the need for as many people doing the job and the industrial revolution will continue.
If we do not restructure our economy to accommodate this ongoing industrial revolution we will have major societal upheavals, as has happened in the past.
We have made changes before: 5 day work week, overtime and other labor laws, minimum wage laws, progressive tax laws. People moved from agrarian society to industrial society as farm workers (and horses) lost their jobs to big machines. Same with miners and countless other jobs. Later, secretaries, draftsmen, accountants, telephone operators and other phone workers lost jobs to computers and it continues on, unfortunately we stopped adapting our economy and have regressed. This is the real crisis coming from all the current efforts in AI.
Replying to douglasarcher: I think you have clearly stated the immediate crisis. The crisis that concerns Elon is more existential, though how immediate cannot be very precisely known. But the ongoing exponential rate of AI improvement is key. As Elon likes to say, there are only two possibilities for the future: Either AI will vastly supersede general human intelligence, or civilization will cease. If civilization persists in anything like its current form, then progress in AI will achieve superhuman general intelligence. The rub is what happens after that.
The human mind is insanely complex. take for example our ability to in conversation contemplate and posit many articulate complex thoughts. our socialism our banter even verbal defensive stances or profess admiration or pleasantries. to cajole or to contain. a simple chess game against a computer is nothing compared to our verbal sparing and complexities on a daily basis. pattern recognition is a bland term that doesn't truly espouse our ability to analyze and determine outcomes and correct responses. it is true that our minds might not have the precision of a retarded computer but if the goal is a pass/fail then exactness isn't so necessary
History is full of fads that have blown over; philosopher's stone, potion of eternal youth, gold making, and more recently evolutionism, string theory and AI.


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I think there was probably more artificial intelligence in their water bottles than real intelligence in them. :laughing:


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Is it just me or are the quotes from these two giants of commerce sounding like a couple of jo blogs having a few beers and speaking out of their asses?
Oh, you didn't know? In addition to making you better looking, funnier, a genius, and able to take shits that don't stink, being rich makes you an expert on everything in the general field in which you became rich from. So both of them are space, science, computer and technology Masters in every subject.
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Posts: 1,297   +1,081
Artifical "intelligence". lol. Smarter? I guess you need to define "smart". You mean smart as in... "smart TV"? LOL. Do they think they are smart? That's not saying much. "Smart" is a relative term.

Computers only do what we tell them. They are not smarter than us. Think faster? Duh. They cannot create (think of) something that does not exist already.