New Delhi: Warren Buffett, the 92-year-old CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, expressed concerns about the rapid advancement of artificial intelligence (AI) technology, comparing it to the creation of the atom bomb. During his company’s annual meeting, he claimed that AI could change everything in the world except how people think and behave. Buffett acknowledged AI’s capacity to do all kinds of things but also its limits, such as its inability to tell convincing jokes.
Buffett’s comparison with the atom bomb is significant, given his long-standing opposition to nuclear weapons. He emphasized the need to think about the long-term consequences of AI rather than just its short-term benefits. He questioned whether the creation of the atom bomb was good for the next 200 years of the world, given that it unleashed an enormous power that changed everything except how people think and behave, paraphrasing a quote from Albert Einstein.
However, Buffett also recognized that new technologies do not take away opportunities. He said, “What gives you the opportunities is other people doing dumb things.”
Buffett’s comments echo those of other experts, who have raised concerns about the potential dangers of AI. Geoffrey Hinton, a former Google employee and often considered the ‘Godfather of AI’, claimed that he left the tech company to talk openly about AI and its dangers. Stuart Russell, the author of Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach, compared AI to the Chernobyl disaster, warning that if left unchecked, it could lead to a disaster.
Russell recently signed a petition demanding that companies like OpenAI and Microsoft stop the development of AI models more advanced than GPT-4. In an exclusive interaction with Business Today, he discussed why he signed the petition, emphasizing the need for caution in AI development.
Buffett’s concerns about AI are valid, as the technology has the potential to transform many industries and change the world in significant ways. However, the technology also has its limits, and its impact on society and the environment must be considered. The development of AI should be guided by ethical principles that prioritize the long-term well-being of society.