All bow to AI
Artificial intelligence will outperform human beings across a number of activities over the next 10 years – they include translating languages (by 2024), writing high-school essays (2026) and driving trucks (by 2027), working in retail (2031). But it’s going to take a little longer before they outdo us when it comes to writing a bestselling book (by 2049) or working as a surgeon (2053), according to a global survey of machine learning researchers conducted by Yale and Oxford Universities.
Those researchers surveyed reckon there’s a 50% chance of AI outperforming humans across all tasks in 45 years’ time, and of automating all human jobs in 120 years – Asian respondents expect these milestones to be reached much sooner than North Americans do.
Respondents were asked whether high-level machine intelligence would have a positive or negative impact on humanity over the long run. The median probability was 25% for a good outcome and 20% for an extremely good outcome. By contrast, the probability was 10% for a bad outcome and 5% for an outcome described as extremely bad. How bad would that be? Well, human extinction is a possibility.
Image: Steve Mullins