Elon Musk: Government Should Regulate Artificial Intelligence (A.I.)

Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk thinks that organizations developing advanced artificial intelligence (A.I.) should be regulated, including his companies.

Musk is also pessimistic about Dario Amodei, the research director of OpenAI, the organization (which Musk helped found) devoted to figuring out how to evolve A.I. in a safe and responsible manner. Musk has little control over OpenAI’s current initiatives, he insisted in the same Tweet where he backhanded Amodei:

“All orgs developing advanced AI should be regulated, including Tesla,” Musk added in the same Tweet-thread, both by governments and global organizations. 

Musk’s Tweet sparked some indignation from John Carmack, another technology-industry legend, who evidently believes that the lighter the regulations on A.I., the better for everyone involved:

One of the instigators of Musk’s recent Tweeting: an article in MIT Technology Review about the goings-on at OpenAI. “There is a misalignment between what the company publicly espouses and how it operates behind closed doors,” the article began. “Over time, it has allowed a fierce competitiveness and mounting pressure for ever more funding to erode its founding ideals of transparency, openness, and collaboration.”

OpenAI began its existence as a nonprofit before warping into something new. It now has a for-profit arm (referred to as “capped profit”) that could end up building commercial projects. According to the article, that sparked off protests by some employees who signed onto OpenAI for purely altruistic reasons (although reports indicate that some OpenAI researchers made quite a bit of money).

However the situation with OpenAI pans out—and whether governments follow Musk’s prediction and really step in to regulate machine learning and artificial intelligence (A.I.) at companies like Tesla—chances are very good that A.I. and machine learning tools and techniques will become a part of your workflow within the next decade. If you want to get a jump on the fundamentals of A.I., there are some good resources online, including a Google “crash course,” complete with 25 lessons and 40+ exercises, that’s a good introduction to machine learning concepts.  

Hacker Noon likewise features an interesting breakdown of machine learning and artificial intelligence. If you’re really, really good at the mathematics underlying ML, you can also check out Bloomberg’s Foundations of Machine Learning, a free online course that teaches advanced concepts such as optimization and kernel methods.

2 Responses to “Elon Musk: Government Should Regulate Artificial Intelligence (A.I.)”

  1. Ed Karl

    Just because we don’t know “how” to regulate it already, doesn’t mean it’s not a good idea. In fact, I think it means we need to get to work all the more so on how to do it well. Has anyone considered that implications of AI with exponentially increasing computing power, and the (to me) esoteric possibilities involved in quantum computing once it gains more practical means of being implemented? Yes, I know, they have in fact, but no one really believes them yet. It can literally predict things no one thought possible, or so I understand (poorly). So, yes. Even poor regulation might be better than none, especially if this unknown “quantity” is being placed in positions of responsibility and, or control and power. Which it already is. Some approaches I have seen mentioned:
    * keep it’s scope of influence or application “narrow” –
    * “starve it” (of our personal information)
    * ? no regulation?
    * Outlawing all AI.

    Take your pick. all except for option C would be possibilities. No regulation? Well, … good luck.