'Godfather of AI' Leaves Google Fearing The Very Thing He Worked To Develop

The ‘Godfather of AI,’ Geoffry Hinton, has exited Google to speak out against the ‘dangers’ of the very technology he worked to develop.

Hinton put out a tweet on Monday informing people of his decision to exit the tech conglomerate, stating “I left so that I could talk about the dangers of AI without considering how this impacts Google,” but assured people that “Google has acted very responsibly.”

Whether Google is acting responsibly can be up for debate, as back in July of 2022, Google fired an engineer claiming that an AI named LaMDA had become fully sentient during his time working with it, per The Guardian

Hinton originally joined Google in March of 2013, when the company he was previously working for, DNNresearch Inc., was acquired by the tech giant, as reported by TechCrunch.
The New York Times was the first to break the news of his major decision, and in the discussion with them, Hinton said “I console myself with the normal excuse: If I hadn’t done it, somebody else would have.”

Hinton now joins a growing list of major tech figures warning the public about the risks posed by the development of artificial intelligence. In March, prominent figures in the tech industry signed a letter calling for AI labs to hold back on training their top models for at least six months, saying that there were “profound risks to society and humanity,” as reported by CNN

In the Times interview, Hinton noted many concerns others have with AI, such as its possibility to eliminate jobs from humans and the possibility to spread misinformation. Hinton claimed AI could make a world where people will “not be able to know what is true anymore.”

The AI developer also spoke about his concern of the speed in which AI is advancing, saying it’s much faster than anyone had originally anticipated. Hinton said most people thought AI becoming smarter than man was still “30 to 50 years or even longer away,” but we have already passed that point. 

The former Google employee has already been speaking against the dangers of artificial intelligence development even before stepping away from his former company. In a 2021 commencement address at the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay in Mumbai, Hinton said, “I believe that the rapid progress of AI is going to transform society in ways we do not fully understand, and not all of the effects are going to be good.”

This continues the trend of AI being painted as a threat, especially by many of those at the forefront of it. While AI is undoubtedly an interesting prospect for the future of humanity, we must do all we can to ensure the safety of people first, and innovation second. 
  • Article Source: DC Enquirer
  • Photo: Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images / Getty Images
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