From Sir Martin Rees at NBC:
AI apocalypse is certainly in the air. Elon Musk, Henry Kissinger, and the late Stephen Hawking have all predicted an AI doomsday. Industry professionals’ doubt and disparagement don’t seem to register with the media in the same way.
Rees, who is former president of the Royal Society, goes further, however. He also predicts in his book that “a physics experiment could swallow up the entire universe.” When he received the Templeton Prize in 2011, he was noted for speculating that we could be living in a giant computer simulation. In 2017, he suggested that our universe may be lost in an “unbounded cosmic archipelago,” a multiverse where “we could all have avatars.” As for universes, “Ours would belong to the unusual subset where there was a “lucky draw” of cosmic numbers conducive to the emergence of complexity and consciousness. Its seemingly designed or fine-tuned features wouldn’t be surprising.”
The only type of universe we do not seem to be living in, on that view, is the simpler one we observe, about which we have at least some information.More.
Reality check: It’s unfortunate that the public is taught by legacy media to take seriously the claims of prominent people like Sir Martin who don’t have day-to-day knowledge of what is happening in machine learning, while ignoring professionals who say, well, um, no, not really… And it’ll be more than just unfortunate, if out gassing politicians get the whole landscape wrong when they promote and vote on legislation.
See also: See also: AI machines taking over the world? It’s a cool apocalypse but does that make it more likely?
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