Super-Intelligent Machines

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There is no doubt that the deeply ingrained desire to understand and mimic intelligence will continue to inspire technological and scientific innovations. Nature Machine Intelligence will endeavour to bring different fields together, forging new collaborations in AI, robotics, cognitive science and machine learning, to further develop visions of intelligent machines that can be of inspiration and use for humanity.

There are roughly three main themes that we will initially focus on: the engineering and study of algorithms and hardware to build intelligent machines; applications of machine intelligence such as deep learning systems to specific areas and topics in other domains for example, physics, biology and healthcare ; and lastly the study of the impact of machine intelligence in society, industry and science.

This first issue of Nature Machine Intelligence features pieces in each of these categories. In an Article, Etienne Burdet and colleagues report on work of the first category, on developing algorithms for adaptive human—robot collaboration, and the Review by Kenneth Stanley et al. For the second theme, one of the best-known applications of deep learning is in medicine, and a Perspective by Edmon Begoli and co-workers examines the need for uncertainty quantification in this area. We also start a series called Challenge Accepted , which are reports on data challenges and competitions in AI and robotics, to highlight the important and sometimes surprising role these play in steering a field, giving young researchers a chance to demonstrate their skills and to crowdsource solutions to outstanding practical questions in science or industry.

The pursuit of intelligent machines will continue to inspire in many ways, providing us with insights into human intelligence as well as stimulating technological and scientific innovation that could lead to future societal transformations. Now is the time to be part of the conversation.

Delcker, J.

Jordan, M. De Fauw, J. Download references.

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  5. Super-Intelligent Machines.

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Super-intelligent machines spawned by A.I.? Execs aren't worried

Article Google Scholar 4. Rights and permissions Reprints and Permissions. About this article. Audretsch Small Business Economics Download PDF. Nature Machine Intelligence menu. Nature Research menu. Search Article search Search. He was visiting Cambridge for a conference because he wants the academic community to take AI safety more seriously. At Jesus College, our dining companions were a random assortment of conference-goers, including a woman from Hong Kong who was studying robotics and a British man who graduated from Cambridge in the s.

The older man asked everybody at the table where they attended university. He then tried to steer the conversation toward the news. Tallinn looked at him blankly. Tallinn changed the topic to the threat of superintelligence. When not talking to other programmers, he defaults to metaphors, and he ran through his suite of them: advanced AI can dispose of us as swiftly as humans chop down trees. Superintelligence is to us what we are to gorillas.

What is AI?

An AI would need a body to take over, the older man said. Without some kind of physical casing, how could it possibly gain physical control? Then he took a bite of risotto. Programmers assign these goals, along with a series of rules on how to pursue them. And the history of computer programming is rife with small errors that sparked catastrophes. The researchers Tallinn funds believe that if the reward structure of a superhuman AI is not properly programmed, even benign objectives could have insidious ends. One well-known example, laid out by the Oxford University philosopher Nick Bostrom in his book Superintelligence , is a fictional agent directed to make as many paperclips as possible.

The AI might decide that the atoms in human bodies would be better put to use as raw material. Others say that focusing on rogue technological actors diverts attention from the most urgent problems facing the field, like the fact that the majority of algorithms are designed by white men, or based on data biased toward them. Several of the institutes Tallinn backs are members. But, she added, some of the near-term challenges facing researchers, such as weeding out algorithmic bias, are precursors to ones that humanity might see with super-intelligent AI.

He counters that superintelligent AI brings unique threats. Ultimately, he hopes that the AI community might follow the lead of the anti-nuclear movement in the s. In the wake of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, scientists banded together to try to limit further nuclear testing. T allinn warns that any approach to AI safety will be hard to get right. If an AI is sufficiently smart, it might have a better understanding of the constraints than its creators do. The theorist Yudkowsky found evidence this might be true when, starting in , he conducted chat sessions in which he played the role of an AI enclosed in a box, while a rotation of other people played the gatekeeper tasked with keeping the AI in.

Three out of five times, Yudkowsky — a mere mortal — says he convinced the gatekeeper to release him. His experiments have not discouraged researchers from trying to design a better box, however. The researchers that Tallinn funds are pursuing a broad variety of strategies, from the practical to the seemingly far-fetched. Some theorise about boxing AI, either physically, by building an actual structure to contain it, or by programming in limits to what it can do. Others are trying to teach AI to adhere to human values. A few are working on a last-ditch off-switch.

Armstrong is one of the few researchers in the world who focuses full-time on AI safety. When I met him for coffee in Oxford, he wore an unbuttoned rugby shirt and had the look of someone who spends his life behind a screen, with a pale face framed by a mess of sandy hair. He peppered his explanations with a disorienting mixture of popular-culture references and math. Everything is awesome. In a paper with Nick Bostrom, who co-founded FHI, he proposed not only walling off superintelligence in a holding tank — a physical structure — but also restricting it to answering questions, like a really smart Ouija board.

Even with these boundaries, an AI would have immense power to reshape the fate of humanity by subtly manipulating its interrogators. To reduce the possibility of this happening, Armstrong proposes time limits on conversations, or banning questions that might upend the current world order. He also has suggested giving the oracle proxy measures of human survival, like the Dow Jones industrial average or the number of people crossing the street in Tokyo, and telling it to keep these steady. But designing such a switch is far from easy. It is not just that an advanced AI interested in self-preservation could prevent the button from being pressed.

It could also become curious about why humans devised the button, activate it to see what happens, and render itself useless.

Machine Learning & Artificial Intelligence: Crash Course Computer Science #34

Determined not to lose at Tetris, the AI simply pressed pause — and kept the game frozen. What if the AI has copied itself several thousand times across the internet? The approach that most excites researchers is finding a way to make AI adhere to human values— not by programming them in, but by teaching AIs to learn them. In a world dominated by partisan politics, people often dwell on the ways in which our principles differ.

Despite the challenges, Tallinn believes, it is worth trying because the stakes are so high.

Safety must come first

O n his last night in Cambridge, I joined Tallinn and two researchers for dinner at a steakhouse. A waiter seated our group in a white-washed cellar with a cave-like atmosphere. He handed us a one-page menu that offered three different kinds of mash. A couple sat down at the table next to us, and then a few minutes later asked to move elsewhere.

Here we were, in the box. As if on cue, the men contemplated ways to get out. They joked about an idea for a nerdy action flick titled Superintelligence v Blockchain!

Super-intelligent machines spawned by A.I.? Execs aren't worried | Computerworld

The exercise involves repeatedly clicking your mouse to make paperclips. Eventually, talk shifted toward bigger questions, as it often does when Tallinn is present. In other words, does AI have rights?

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