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Killer Robot Fears Are ‘Unwarranted And Irresponsible,’ Says Google Exec

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Eric Lieberman Deputy Editor
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Fear-mongering over the technologically advanced concept of artificial intelligence is “unwarranted and irresponsible,” a Google chief said Tuesday.

John Giannandrea was likely referencing statements made by Tesla CEO Elon Musk and perhaps famous astrophysicist Stephen Hawking. Musk, who heads a nonprofit research firm called OpenAI, has been lobbying government bureaucrats to craft regulations against AI before robots hypothetically begin killing people in the streets.

He co-signed a letter sent to the United Nations with 115 other tech leaders in an attempt to convince the international governing body to ban “killer robots,” formally known as lethal autonomous weapons. Musk even said AI development would lead to an international arms race, and thus World War III.

Somewhat similarly, Hawking told BBC that “the development of full artificial intelligence could spell the end of the human race.”

“There’s a huge amount of unwarranted hype around AI right now,” Giannandrea said at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco, according to Bloomberg, presumably referring to the negative public attention. “This leap into, ‘Somebody is going to produce a superhuman intelligence and then there’s going to be all these ethical issues’ is unwarranted and borderline irresponsible.”

Giannandrea did acknowledge that Google cares about the potential safety and ethical implications of AI, but urged more radical concerns could be detrimental.

“I’m definitely not worried about the AI apocalypse,” he continued, according to Bloomberg. “I just object to the hype and the sound bites that some people have been making.”

Giannandrea isn’t the only tech leader to condemn the apparent arousal of fear over the advent of AI.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in July that he’s “really optimistic” for AI and, like Giannandrea, also argued that overly-dramatic clamoring is “irresponsible.”

“I think people who are naysayers and try to drum up these doomsday scenarios — I just I don’t understand it,” the tech wunderkind said, according to Axios. “It’s really negative and in some ways I actually think it is pretty irresponsible … In the next five to 10 years, AI is going to deliver so many improvements in the quality of our lives.”

Zuckerberg cited how, as humans build and create more, the economy, and in turn human lives, gradually improve. (RELATED: Sex Robots Are Here And Could Change Society Forever)

Musk, in a fairly restrained way, indirectly responded by saying Zuckerberg’s knowledge about the future of AI is “limited.”

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