OpenAI is one of the world’s leading AI organizations. Co-founder Sam Altman is known for his pithy theses – and is now putting forward another one: He expects AI to drastically change all of our lives before the end of this decade.
OpenAI is especially known for its generative AI models GPT-3 and DALL-E 2, and in general for its research on large AI models trained via Deep Learning. While the models so far are impressive and could lead to changes in the job market, they are only a means to an end, a building block to the real goal: general artificial intelligence that fundamentally changes our society. This is OpenAI’s vision.
Infinite energy and infinite intelligence
On Twitter, Altman now predicts that a major AI revolution will occur, or at least be clearly on the horizon, before the end of this decade. Through AI technology, humanity will have access to “‘unlimited’ intelligence and energy, and all that will unlock,” Altman writes.
“The future can be so good that it’s hard for any of us to imagine,” Altman writes.
But as the benefits grow, so do the risks. So far, humanity has not been able to balance the advantages and disadvantages of technology well, such as how much time we spend online or in nature, Altman says. “Technology increases the expected value and volatility of society, but it also increases the action space,” he writes.
Despite the risks, Altman believes there is no alternative to technological advancement. Technological progress cannot and should not be stopped. While this does pose dangers, “if we stopped all technological development, we’d all just be waiting for the next asteroid,” Altman says.
Altman’s AI utopia: Everyone is set for life
In Altman’s AI utopia, humanity is collectively set. The mindset, and thus the actions of people, shifts over time from worrying about not having enough to realizing that you never have to worry again.
“When this happens at mass scale, many people will choose to relax all the time, and many other will do amazing new work, freed from constraints,” Altman writes.
Altman doesn’t expect AI to replace or surpass every single type of natural intelligence, but it will become good enough in many areas to bring about drastic changes, he has said in the past. The job market, in particular, is poised for major upheaval: The AI revolution will lead to “phenomenal wealth” as the price of manual labor approaches zero, Altman wrote in an essay.