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On Thursday, Rishi Sunak will seek to reassure the public about the risks posed by artificial intelligence, as the UK government outlines a possible scenario in which advances in automation lead to a rise in unemployment and poverty by 2030.
The British Prime Minister is promising people we will keep you safe, in a speech to coincide with the publication of a set of documents intended to inform discussions at next week’s AI security summit at Bletchley Park.
Scenarios developed by a government task force chaired by tech investor Ian Hogarth explore the opportunities and risks of advanced artificial intelligence.
The papers envision the development of high-performance, general-purpose AI models that can perform a wide range of tasks and match or exceed the capabilities found in today’s most advanced models.
So-called frontier AI consists of systems using large neural networks that function like the human brain and includes products that underpin products such as OpenAI’s ChatGPT and Google Bard chatbots.
Next week’s summit will focus largely on threats such as the ability of artificial intelligence to aid cyberattacks or design biological weapons, but will also address other potential impacts on society.
One scenario outlined by the Hogarths Task Force assumes that artificial intelligence systems will begin to provide effective automation in many areas in the near future.
The article goes on to say: By 2030, the most extreme impacts will be limited to a subset of sectors, but there is still a societal response, from those whose work is disrupted to fierce public debate about the future of education and work.
In this scenario, AI systems are considered technically safe, but they nevertheless cause adverse effects such as increased unemployment and poverty.
The summit will also address more existential threats, such as the possibility of artificial intelligence taking control of humans autonomously. There is insufficient evidence to rule out that future border AI, if misadapted, misused or improperly controlled, could pose an existential threat, a task force paper on the future threats of border AI said.
But he added that many experts consider this highly unlikely because artificial intelligence would need to be able to take over and avoid being shut down.
Expressing a more positive view of the potential of technology ahead of the summit, Sunak will also say that artificial intelligence will bring new knowledge, new opportunities for economic growth, new advances in human capabilities and the chance to solve problems we once thought were beyond us.
The British government hopes to host several world leaders at next week’s summit, but there are fears that attendance will be affected by the war between Israel and Hamas.
The head of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, US Vice President Kamala Harris and Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo, as well as representatives of China are still scheduled to attend the summit.
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