(CNN) Some of the biggest names in tech are calling on artificial intelligence labs to halt training of the most powerful AI systems for at least six months, citing “profound risks to society and humanity”.
This letter comes two weeks after OpenAI declared GPT-4, An even more powerful version of the technology behind the viral AI chatbot tool, ChatGPT. In early tests and a company demo, the technology was shown drawing cases, passing standardized tests, and creating a working website from a hand-drawn sketch.
The letter said the suspension would apply to AI systems “more powerful than GPT-4”. It also said independent experts should use the proposed moratorium to jointly develop and implement a set of shared protocols for AI tools that are safe “beyond reasonable doubt.”
“Advanced AI could represent a profound change in the history of life on Earth and must be planned and managed with appropriate care and resources,” the letter states. said. “Unfortunately, this level of planning and management hasn’t happened, and while recent months have seen AI labs locked in an uncontrollable race, no one — not even its creators — can yet understand, predict or reliably control the creation and deployment of powerful digital minds.”
The letter said governments should step in and create a moratorium if a moratorium is not put in place soon.
The wave of attention surrounding ChatGPT late last year renewed an arms race among tech companies to develop and use similar AI tools in their products. OpenAI, Microsoft and Google are leading the trend, but IBM, Amazon, Baidu and Tencent are also working on the technology. A long list of startups are also developing AI writing assistants and image generators.
Artificial intelligence experts are increasingly concerned about AI tools’ potential for biased responses, their ability to spread misinformation, and the impact on consumer privacy. These tools have raised questions about how AI can improve industries, deceive students, and change our relationship with technology.
The letter points to a broader unease inside and outside the industry with AI’s rapid progress. Previously there were some governing agencies in China, the European Union and Singapore introduced Early versions of the AI personality framework.
Correction: An earlier version of this story said Microsoft founder Bill Gates and OpenAI CEO Sam Altman signed the letter. While executives were initially listed as signatories, the nonprofit behind the letter later removed their names.