Photo: Paul Faith/PA
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has warned that artificial intelligence could be used by “bad actors” and make it harder to detect fraud and misinformation.
Wozniak, who co-founded Apple with the late Steve Jobs and invented the company’s first computer, said AI content should be clearly labeled and called for the sector to be regulated.
The Silicon Valley entrepreneur was among more than 1,800 people who, along with Tesla CEO Elon Musk, signed a letter in March calling for a six-month hiatus in the development of powerful AI systems, arguing that they need a pose a pervasive risk to humanity. Some signers of the letter later turned out to be forgers, and others withdrew their support.
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Wozniak, known as Woz in the tech world, spoke about the benefits of AI and the dangers.
“AI is so intelligent that it’s open to the bad players, the ones who want to trick you into who they are,” he told the BBC.
AI refers to computer systems capable of performing tasks that would normally require human intelligence. One of these, GPT-4, developed by OpenAI, a company Musk co-founded and now Microsoft-backed, can hold conversations like a human, compose songs, and summarize long documents.
Wozniak doesn’t think AI will replace humans because it lacks emotion, but warned that it will make bad actors more compelling because programs like ChatGPT can create text that “sounds so intelligent.”
He argued that the responsibility for AI-generated programs rests with those who publish them: “A human must really take responsibility for what is generated by AI.”
He called on regulators to hold accountable the big tech companies that “feel like they can get away with anything,” but was skeptical regulators would get it right. “The forces that go after money usually win, which is kind of sad,” he said.
Wozniak said that “we can’t stop the technology,” but added that we could educate people to spot fraud and malicious attempts to steal personal information.
Apple CEO Tim Cook cautioned against caution when he told investors last week that it’s important to be “thoughtful and thoughtful” in approaching AI. “We see AI as tremendous and we will continue to weave it into our products on a very thoughtful basis,” he said.
Geoffrey Hinton, whose research on neural networks helped lay the foundations for the artificial intelligence revolution, has also voiced his concerns that the pace of improvements could pose a real risk to humans. He told the Guardian that there is a possibility humans could eventually be controlled by AI or even wiped out.