Eric Schmidt, former CEO of Google, has rejected calls from fellow technology leaders to pause research into artificial intelligence (AI). Schmidt argues that such a halt would benefit China and that instead, technology leaders should agree on appropriate guardrails. Schmidt's comments follow an open letter signed by Elon Musk, Steve Wozniak, and others calling for a moratorium on "giant AI experiments," citing potential risks to society. However, Schmidt agrees that there are legitimate concerns regarding the development of AI and that "things could be worse than people are saying." He adds that if the industry cannot agree on guardrails, governments will impose their own standards.
A report published in the Harvard International Review warns that Chinese development of AI technology poses "uncertain risks" to western powers. The article expresses concerns that China's development could give them an advantage in military and economic domains. Schmidt acknowledges that China is "very smart" and that western nations need to "get their act together" to remain competitive.
Bill Gates has also weighed in on the proposed AI pause, saying that a pause would not "solve" the challenges posed by AI. Hedge fund manager, Bill Ackman, argues that pausing AI development would give "bad guys" time to catch up, and that there is no choice but to continue with AI research.
Schmidt's comments reflect the stance of a centrist journalist, who presents both sides of the debate without taking a clear position. While acknowledging the risks associated with the development of AI, Schmidt argues that a pause in research would give China an advantage and that it is important for the western world to remain competitive. He also suggests that industry leaders should agree on guardrails to ensure that AI is developed in a responsible manner. Ackman, on the other hand, argues that pausing AI development is not an option and that the risks associated with AI can be managed through regulation and oversight. Ultimately, the debate over AI development will continue as technology leaders, governments, and the public grapple with the potential benefits and risks of this rapidly advancing technology.