Many AI experts react relatively relaxed to criticism of the development of artificial intelligence and follow the motto: "It's never as bad as it seems". Not according to Amy Webb, a New York professor and author of The Big Nine. She sees fatal consequences in the fact that states leave the field to companies when it comes to AI.
"From my point of view, the view of the horizon is somewhat out of touch," says Webb, who founded the Future Today Institute, which advises companies on strategic future issues. She is of the opinion that in artificial intelligence countless small developments happen simultaneously, the interaction of which is becoming more and more decisive. "We are already seeing billions of tiny advances that will have a combined effect over time. They will lead to systems that can autonomously make many decisions at the same time," Webb said.
One of the AI expert's favorite examples is AlphaZero, DeepMind's algorithm, which can play three games at once without any human involvement. Webb says: "That's a pretty big jump. We must pause and ask ourselves what happens when these systems ignore human strategies in favor of something completely unknown."
That's exactly what's happening, Webb says. The lack of foresight would result from governments not investing enough in AI research and instead taking the lead from privately owned companies. But the question of laws and rules did not mean so much to them. "That's why there are countless wrong decisions that someone in the 'G-Mafia' has made - Google, Microsoft, Apple, Facebook, IBM and Amazon. Probably because he worked fast," Webb criticizes. This could also be observed in the debate about voter influence and fake news. "My great concern is that everyone must wait and see and there must be a real catastrophe. As if it wasn't catastrophic enough already," Webb says.