Considering Governance for Superintelligence: Advice from OpenAI CEO


OpenAI CEO Sam Altman recently suggested that it would be wise to start thinking about the governance of superintelligence, future Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems that are much more powerful than current AI technologies. Altman highlighted that the risks of today’s AI technology need to be mitigated as well, however “superintelligence will require special treatment and coordination”. The intense power of this AI technology means it can be compared to nuclear energy and synthetic biology, in terms of its usage and purpose.

At a US Senate hearing in Washington, Altman stated that AI industry needs to be regulated by the government as it has the potential of becoming dangerous if it is not controlled. OpenAI’s blog post made reference to setting up a specific governing body, similar to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), to monitor superintelligence efforts in order to track compute and energy usage to generate a system that can be implemented into practice.

OpenAI is an American non-profit organization devoted to researching and developing artificial intelligence technologies in an ethically responsible way. It was co-found by Tesla founder Elon Musk and Sam Altman, former President of Y Combinator, who is currently CEO of OpenAI. Funding for the company came from a variety of investors, including companies such as Microsoft, Amazon, and the US Lockheed Martin. OpenAI hopes to shape the future use of AI to work for the social good and to promote safe, responsible use of powerful AI technology.

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