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Artificial intelligence: is there anything to fear?

21 Mar 2018 James Dacey

Artificial intelligence (AI) bots are going to replace our jobs.

AI cars are not to be trusted, they will drive us off a cliff

AI machines will inevitably conspire to kill us all.

These are exaggerated versions of three fears commonly associated artificial intelligence (AI). Even the late Stephen Hawking spoke about a potential future in which humans could be superseded by advanced forms of artificial intelligence. But these concerns are not so present in the mind of Nathan Myhrvold, the former chief technology officer at Microsoft who once worked in Hawking’s theoretical physics group at the University of Cambridge.

AI representation

Myhrvold is the co-founder of Intellectual Ventures, which develops and licenses intellectual property. Having also written a several tomes about modernist cooking techniques, Myhrvold does not shy away from lofty academic pursuits. Earlier this year, the Seattle-born polymath presented the annual Tacitus Lecture in London with a talk entitled “Cyber-Trade: Will AI Displace or Enhance our Work?”

In our latest podcast, Andrew Glester reports from the event where he spoke to Myhrvold, who explained why he is optimistic that AI can be a force for good in the world. You will also hear clips from that lecture, a few words on the topic from Hawking himself, and a fruity anecdote from Prue Leith one of the judges from the popular TV show The Great British Bakeoff. All will be revealed!

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