Prepare to arrive: tech pioneer warns of alien invasion

Alien species are heading to planet Earth and we have no reason to believe they would be friends. Some experts predict it will be here in 30 years, while others insist it will soon. No one knows what it will look like, but it will share two basic traits with us humans – it will be Clever And Self-awareness.

No, this alien will not come from a distant planet – he will be born here on Earth, hatching in a research laboratory at a major university or a large company. I am referring to the first artificial general intelligence (AGI) to reach (or exceed) human-level cognition.

As I write these words, billions are being spent to bring this alien life back to life, as it is seen as one of the greatest technological achievements in human history. But unlike our other inventions, this one will have a mind of their own, literally. And if it behaves like every other intelligent species we know, it will put its self-interests first, maximizing its survival odds.

Artificial intelligence in our own image

Should we fear a superior intelligence driven by its own goals, values, and self-interests? Many people reject this question, thinking that we will build artificial intelligence systems at Our own photoMaking sure they think, feel, and act just like we do. It is unlikely that this will be the case.

No artificial minds will be created by writing programs with carefully crafted rules that make them think like us. Instead, engineers insert huge data sets into simple algorithms that automatically adjust their own parameters, making millions upon millions of tiny changes in their structure until an intelligence emerges – intelligence with inner workings that is too complex for us to understand.

Nor – data feed about humans You won’t make him think like humans do. This is a common misconception – the misconception that by training AI on data Describe human behaviors, we will ensure that you end up thinking, feeling and acting like We do. It will not.

Instead, we will build these AI creatures to I know Humansnot To be Human. And yes, they will know us inside and out, able to speak our language and interpret our gestures, read our facial expressions and predict our actions. They will understand how we make decisions, for good and bad, logical and illogical. After all, we would have spent decades teaching AI systems how we humans behave in almost every situation.

But they are profoundly different

But still, their minds will not be like ours. To us, they will appear omniscient, connected to remote sensors of all kinds, in all places. In my 2020 book, Arrival Mind, I portrayed AGI as “She has a billion eyes and ears,” Its perceptual abilities can easily extend across the world. We humans cannot imagine what it would be like to perceive our world in such an expansive and inclusive way, and yet somehow suppose that a mind like this would share our morals, values, and sensibilities. It will not.

Synthetic brains will be profoundly different from any biological brains we know on Earth – from their basic structure and functions to physiology and psychology in general. Of course, we will create human-like bodies inhabited by these strange minds, but they will be little more than automated interfaces to make ourselves feel comfortable in their presence.

Indeed, we humans will work hard to make these aliens look like us and talk like us, so that they may smile and laugh like us, but deep down they won’t be like us. Most likely, their brains will live in the cloud (in whole or in part) associated with features and functions within and outside of the human forms we diagnose.

However, the interface will work – we won’t fear these aliens – not the way we fear beings rushing towards us in a mysterious spacecraft. We may also feel a sense of kinship, view them as our own creation, and as a manifestation of our ingenuity. But putting these feelings aside, we begin to realize that an alien intelligence born here is much more dangerous than the one that might come from afar.

The danger is inside

After all, the alien mind built here will know everything about us from the moment it arrives, having been designed to understand humans inside and out—improved to sense our feelings and anticipate our actions, predict our feelings, influence our beliefs and influence our opinions. If the creatures rushing toward us in elegant silver spaceships had a deep knowledge of our behaviors and tendencies, we would be terrified.

AI can already defeat our best players in the toughest games on Earth. But in fact, these systems are not only masters of chess, poker and air games, but they also master games human gameLearn to accurately predict our actions and reactions, anticipate our mistakes and exploit our weaknesses. Researchers around the world are already working on developing AI systems to outsmart us, outsmart us, and outsmart us.

Is there anything we can do to protect ourselves?

We certainly can’t prevent AI from getting more powerful, as no innovation has ever been contained. And while some are working to put safeguards in place, we can’t assume they will be enough to eliminate the threat. In fact, a Pew Research survey indicates that few professionals believe the industry will implement meaningful “ethical AI” practices by 2030.

How do we prepare to arrive?

The best first step is to realize that AI will occur in the coming decades and will not be a digital version of human intelligence. Will be foreign intelligence Strange and dangerous as if it came from a distant planet.

Bringing urgency to AI ethics

If we frame the problem in this way, we may quickly address it, pushing to organize artificial intelligence systems that monitor and manipulate the audience, sense our feelings and anticipate our behaviors. Such technologies may not seem like an existential threat today, as they are mostly developed to improve the effectiveness of AI-driven advertising, not to facilitate world domination. But this does not diminish the danger – AI techniques designed to analyze human emotions and influence our beliefs against us can easily be used as weapons of mass persuasion.

We also need to be more careful when automating human decisions. While it is undeniable that AI can help make effective decisions, we must always keep humans in the loop. This means using AI to enhance human intelligence rather than work to replace it.

Whether we prepare or not, alien minds are on our way and could easily become our competitors, vying for the same spot at the top of the intellectual food chain. And while there is a serious effort in the AI ​​community to push for safe technologies, there is also a lack of urgency. This is because many of us mistakenly believe that conscious AI created by humanity will somehow be a branch of the human tree, like a digital descendant that shares a very human core.

This is wishful thinking. Real AI will likely be very different from ours in just about everything. Yes, he will be remarkably skilled pretend Being human, but under a friendly facade of people, each person will be a competing mind who thinks, feels, and acts like any creature we have met on Earth. It’s time to get ready now.

Louis Rosenberg, Ph.D. is a technology leader in the fields of VR, AR, and AI. He is known for developing the first Augmented Reality System for the US Air Force in 1992, for founding virtual reality company Immersion Corp (Nasdaq IMMR) in 1993, and for early AR company Outland Research in 2004. He is currently founder and CEO of unanimous AI.


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