Elon Musk & Steve Wozniak sign open letter calling for pause on AI system training

Musk has been vocal about his anxiousness about AI's pace, but Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak also joined in signing a letter to hit the brakes on AI development.

Image via OpenAI

The development and integration of artificial intelligence technologies into various products and utilities has been moving at an alarming rate this year, and tech luminaries like Elon Musk and Steve Wozniak are nervous about it. Elon has opined multiple times that the pace of AI learning concerns him, but recently, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak joined him in signing an open letter calling for the pausing of training AI systems for six months to allow for planning, management, and oversight to catch up.

The letter was published recently on the Future of Life Institute Website. Titled “Pause Giant AI Experiments,” the letter points out that many AI labs have admitted that the pace at which giant companies are moving with the technology could be dangerous and represents “profound risks to society and humanity.” With that in mind, the letter makes demands for the following actions:

Future of Life Institute's open letter calling for a pause on AI training.
Future of Life Institute's open letter, signed by Elon Musk and Steve Wozniak, calls for a 6-month pause on AI tech training to create suitable safety protocols, and additionally calls on governments to step in if these protocols cannot be enacted quickly.
Source: Future of Life Institute

Where a number of major tech players, including Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang and former Microsoft CEO Bill Gates, have approached AI with enthusiasm at its capabilities, a handful of tech personalities have had less optimistic opinions. Elon Musk famously called AI “dangerous technology” in need of better regulatory oversight during Tesla’s 2023 Investor Day.

“It’s quite a dangerous technology, and I fear I may have done some things to accelerate it,” Musk said on the matter.

Steve Wozniak and nearly 1,100 other tech and academia experts also seem to agree, having signed the letter calling for a pause on AI training.

“As stated in the widely-endorsed Asilomar AI Principles, ‘Advanced AI could represent a profound change in the history of life on Earth, and should be planned for and managed with commensurate care and resources,’” the letter warns. “Unfortunately, this level of planning and management is not happening, even though 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.”

It will remain to be seen if groups like Microsoft, which has pushed ChatGPT, and Google, with its own Apprentice Bard competitor, will hear the concerns out and adhere to them. Stay tuned as we follow this story for further updates.

Senior News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player and writer with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. He found his way to the Shacknews roster in late 2019 and has worked his way to Senior News Editor since. Between news coverage, he also aides notably in livestream projects like the indie game-focused Indie-licious, the Shacknews Stimulus Games, and the Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at tj.denzer@shacknews.com and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

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