AI Won’t End the World, But It Might Take Your Job | WIRED

There’s been a lot of fear about the future of artificial intelligence.

Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk worry that AI-powered computers might one day become uncontrollable super-intelligent demons. So does Bill Gates.

But Baidu chief scientist Andrew Ng—one of the world’s best-known AI researchers and a guy who’s building out what is likely one of the world’s largest applied AI projects—says we really ought to worry more about robot truck drivers than the Terminator.

In fact, he’s irritated by the discussion about scientists somehow building an apocalyptic super-intelligence. “I think it’s a distraction from the conversation about…serious issues,” Ng said at an AI conference in San Francisco last week.

Ng isn’t alone in thinking this way. A select group of AI luminaries met recently at aclosed door retreat in Puerto Rico to discuss ethics and AI. WIRED interviewed some of them, and the consensus was that there are short-term and long-term AI issues to worry about. But it’s the long-term questions getting all the press.

What do you think?