Elon Musk and almost 4,000 high-profile signatories, including engineers from Amazon, DeepMind, Google, Meta, and Microsoft, attempted to halt the giddying acceleration of generative artificial intelligence in an open letter published in late March.
“Recent months have seen AI labs locked in an out-of-control race to develop and deploy ever more powerful digital minds that no one – not even their creators – can understand, predict, or reliably control,” read the letter. “Powerful AI systems should be developed only once we are confident that their effects will be positive and their risks will be manageable.”
Everyone should take note when the brightest human – rather than machine – minds are demanding progress be paused. But has the bot not already bolted? And considering the possible competitive advantages if rivals opt to down AI tools, will the temptation to continue pushing the boundaries of technology beyond their current limits not be too irresistible for business leaders?
Many have wasted little time embracing ChatGPT, a large-scale language model fed 300 billion words by developer OpenAI that is “confidently incorrect,” and DALL-E, a similar tool that generates images rather than words. While interest has surged in the former, potentially the bigger, creepier issues are around the latter, specifically copyright infringements.
The full version of this article was first published on Digiday’s future-of-work platform, WorkLife, in April 2023 – to read the complete piece, please click HERE.
In Ancient Rome, where the public was enthralled by celebrity culture and helped elevate and sink reputations, 2022 would have been labeled an annus horribilis for cultish business leaders.
Given the recent fall from eminence of several headline-generating bosses, could 2023 be the year people – including investors – finally become more careful not to be hoodwinked by technology entrepreneurs and even snub them altogether? Moreover, have we reached “peak idolatry of innovators,” as suggested by Scott Galloway, clinical professor of marketing at New York University Stern School of Business?
Galloway calculated that the wealthiest leader in the tech space had a 33% chance of being named Time magazine’s person of the year. However, the “gross, nonsensical adoration” of celebrity innovators may have reached the pinnacle after “a tough couple of months for the ‘Church of Technology,’” he added.
The full version of this article was first published on Digiday’s future-of-work platform, WorkLife, in January 2023 – to read the complete piece, please click HERE.
The futuristic notion that a machine will one day become self-aware, for good and evil, has been a staple of science fiction. So when a Google engineer reckoned the company’s Language Model for Dialogue Applications (LaMDA) program had achieved “sentience” in mid-June, it triggered both alarm and glee.
A fortnight before Lemoine’s claim, Elon Musk announced that a prototype of Tesla’s humanoid robot, “Optimus,” would be unveiled in September. Last August, the billionaire suggested the 173-cm, general-purpose bot would have “profound implications for the economy” and be capable of carrying out everyday tasks, including supermarket shopping.
So, how significant are these two headline-grabbing development for businesses? What, back in the realms of science fact and reality, could the advent of sentient AI mean for the future of work? And what should business leaders be doing, if anything, to prepare for this challenge and opportunity?
This article was first published on DigiDay’s future-of-work platform, WorkLife, in July 2022 – to read the complete piece please click HERE.