Following is the full text of US defense expert Jay Tuck’s talk titled “Artificial Intelligence: It Will Kill Us” at TEDxHamburgSalon conference.
The subject of my talk tonight is about something that is smarter than you are: artificial intelligence.
In fact, a lot of people who work in artificial intelligence believe that artificial intelligence is a thousand times smarter than we are. It will be moving at speeds that are a hundred thousand times as fast as we think, and it will be digesting information and data a million times more than we can.
WHAT IS ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE?
There’re a lot of confused ideas about this outside in the world, but the answer is very simple; it’s one sentence: artificial intelligence is software that writes itself. It writes its own updates. It renews itself.
We normally tend to think of software as stuff that we created and that we wrote, and the machines do what we tell them to do, and we own it. This is not any longer true.
It writes itself at speeds that we can hardly comprehend, and people who write it know that you can’t take it apart again and figure out what it has done.
It writes independently, autonomously; it develops its own way of thinking, and there are dangers associated with that.
A lot of people ask, “When is it going to happen? When is artificial intelligence going to be smarter than us people?”
Some people say 50 years. Some say 30 years. Some say five years. I say it already has surpassed us in many areas of our society.
Let’s take some examples from right here and now. The examples that we’re going to talk about are not science fiction; they’re not visions or things that are going to happen at some point. They’re things that exist today, for example in the stock markets, whether Frankfurt or Tokyo or New York or London.
The people you see down there working, on your TV show when you’re watching, they’re more or less extras in a movie. They aren’t doing the big moving.
The big moving is being done by high-frequency computers. They move so fast, they make, in milliseconds, billion-dollar business.
Computers have far succeeded what we can do. In fact, I did a film once about a company that moved five blocks closer to the Frankfurt stock market because at the speed of light on glass cable, they saved so much time, getting closer to the computers at the Frankfurt Stock Exchange.
That will give you an idea of how fast they think and how helpless we, as human beings, are. You may remember the old pictures of the stock brokers with five telephones in each hand, running back and forth, writing things, that was way before yesterday.
Computers have taken over this very, very important part of our society, a heart of our financial community. And no one understands exactly how these algorithms function. They used to understand them, but they’ve been improved by artificial intelligence.
I don’t know how many people flew in today, but if you were sitting in an airplane, you probably had 30 different tariffs and prices in your cabin because the pricing is all done – the same is true of hotels – by machines that are collecting global information, making decisions within split seconds what the price of that airplane seat or that hotel room is going to be.
And where it’s most critical of all – we’re talking about life and death – is in medicine. Computers are better than we are, as human beings, in several areas already today. We’re talking about here and now; this is not science fiction.
I’m speaking next week at the Universitätsklinikum in Essen, and their radiologists, who are supposed to be some of the best radiologists in Germany, they say that a computer can recognize a tumor on an MRT or a CT, faster and better and more precisely than a human being can. It’s picture analysis, and it’s done very well by computers, especially in medicine where it saves lives.
Now, the robots are getting better and better; they’re looking cute. They have these big baby eyes, a sweet way of looking at you. They can examine your facial expression and adjust their’s.
But don’t be fooled by robots even when they get warm skin, perfume, and they start smelling like us and getting really interesting. They are still machines. They have no warm blood in them. There’s no sex in them. They have no mortality. They’re cold code lines, and they shouldn’t be misunderstood.
Now, I want you to understand what the power of artificial intelligence is, and I have two examples: one is surveillance cameras. Everybody knows that we’re being watched by cameras everywhere, and most people think surveillance is a camera there, and it’s me down here, and it’s watching me: one person, one camera.
Well, that’s because we’re stupid. That’s the way we comprehend the surveillance: one camera, one person. We can’t comprehend it when it goes beyond that.
(Video clip) Narrator: This image was taken 17,500 feet above Quantico, Virginia, and covers 15 square miles.
Yiannis Antoniades: This whole image is at a very, very fine resolution. So if we wanted to know what’s going on in any spot along this image, let’s say near this building at this intersection, everything that is a moving object is being automatically tracked. The color boxes represent that the computer has recognized the moving objects. You can see individuals crossing the street. You can see individuals walking in parking lots. There’s actually enough resolution to be able to see the people waving their arms or walking around and what kind of clothes they wear.
Narrator: Unlike the predator camera that limits field of view, ARGUS-IS melts together videos from each of its 368 chips to create a 1.8 billion pixel video stream. This makes it possible to zoom in and still see tremendous detail. (Video concludes)
And it produces a million terabytes every day. That’s a lot of data. I’m telling you this because – not that the sensors are modern and not that the photography is modern – behind that is a brain, or a cognitive intelligence, and that brain is in a position to analyze everybody down there.