Geoffrey Hinton, one of the pioneers of artificial intelligence (AI) and a keen researcher, recently decided to leave Google to sound the alarm about the potential threats inherent in this technology.
The 75-year-old Canadian-British scientist has played a leading role in the development of neural networks, which have enabled major advances in the field of AI. In particular, his work at the University of Toronto in 2012 demonstrated the superiority of these networks, earning him the prestigious Turing Award in 2019 in recognition of his outstanding contributions.
Yet, following his resignation from Google, Geoffrey Hinton expresses concerns about the future of AI and the potentially disastrous consequences for humanity. In an interview with the New York Timeshe asserts that "future versions of this technology could pose a risk to humanity". His concerns focus mainly on the proliferation of misleading videos, photos and articles on the Internet, likely to mislead individuals and sow chaos.
But that's not all: in an interview with the BBC, the researcher also points out that the future prospects for AI are "rather frightening"for human beings. "At the moment, they're not smarter than us, as far as I know. But I'm afraid they soon will be."he adds.
Envisioning "nightmarishnightmarish scenarios"in which a conquering power such as Vladimir Putin's Russia gains access to improved versions of today's technologies, Geoffrey Hinton fears that these technologies could fall into the wrong hands, especially when it comes to the use of autonomous weapons, such as killer robots.
"Dangerous for humanity"
Geoffrey Hinton's concerns join those of other AI experts who recently called for a six-month pause in research to develop regulations for such software deemed "dangerous for humanity".
Despite his criticism, Hinton does not blame his former employer, Google, which he describes as "very responsible" in an interview with the BBC. He explains that he chose to leave the company so that he could speak freely about the dangers of AI without fear of having a negative impact on Google.
Geoffrey Hinton's moral dilemma is fueled by the heightened competition in the AI sector in recent months, with massive investments from Microsoft, Google and other digital giants such as Meta. Faced with these challenges, Geoffrey Hinton calls for stricter regulation of this technology to prevent any threat it might pose to humanity.