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How Not to Destroy the World with AI – On Second Thoughts

Stuart Russell

Professor of Computer Science, UC Berkeley


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Reception from 5-6 pm at the Atrium
Talk from 6-7 pm at the Auditorium

Abstract: The media are agog with claims that recent advances in AI put artificial general intelligence (AGI) within reach. Is this true? If so, is that a good thing? Alan Turing predicted that AGI would result in the machines taking control. I will argue that Turing was right to express concern but wrong to think that doom is inevitable. Instead, we need to develop a new kind of AI that is provably beneficial to humans.

Bio: Stuart Russell is a Professor of Computer Science at the University of California at Berkeley, holder of the Smith-Zadeh Chair in Engineering, and Director of the Center for Human-Compatible AI and the Kavli Center for Ethics, Science, and the Public. He is a recipient of the IJCAI Computers and Thought Award, the IJCAI Research Excellence Award, and the ACM Allen Newell Award. From 2012-14 he held the Chaire Blaise Pascal in Paris. In 2021 he received the OBE from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth and gave the BBC Reith Lectures. He is an Honorary Fellow of Wadham College, Oxford, an Andrew Carnegie Fellow, an AI2050 Senior Fellow, and a Fellow of AAAI, ACM, and AAAS. His book “Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach” (with Peter Norvig) is the standard text in AI, used in over 1500 universities in 135 countries. His research covers a wide range of topics in artificial intelligence, with a current emphasis on the long-term future of artificial intelligence and its relation to humanity. He has developed a new global seismic monitoring system for the nuclear-test-ban treaty and is currently working to ban lethal autonomous weapons.