Being god with AI: Adobe’s Vyshak Venugopalan and Microsoft’s Samik Roy on AI, AGI and should we fear it – Business Today

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Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) is a topic gaining increasing attention and significance in the tech world. As we progress into the future, discussions around AGI are becoming more prevalent, prompting both excitement and concern among experts and enthusiasts alike. Tech Today’s Aayush Ailawadi delved into this topic at the India Today Conclave 2024 during a session ‘Being God with AI: One Command of Inspiration, Imagination and Innovation’ featuring Vyshak Venugopalan – Director Solution Consulting, Adobe India and Samik Roy – Executive Director, India & South Asia, Microsoft.

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AGI represents the next evolution in artificial intelligence, transcending the narrow capabilities of current AI systems. Unlike narrow AI, which is designed for specific tasks like image recognition or natural language processing, AGI aims to replicate the breadth and depth of human intelligence across a wide range of domains.

However, the prospect of achieving AGI raises significant questions and challenges. One of the foremost concerns is the potential misuse or mishandling of this powerful technology. As with any groundbreaking innovation, there is the risk that AGI could fall into the wrong hands, leading to dire consequences. The ability of AGI to surpass human intelligence raises fears of it becoming uncontrollable or even posing existential threats to humanity.

Prominent figures in the tech industry, such as Sam Altman and Elon Musk, have sounded the alarm about the potential risks associated with AGI. Their warnings underscore the need for careful consideration and ethical oversight in the development and deployment of AGI technology. The timeline for achieving AGI remains uncertain, with estimates ranging from a few years to decades.

“I will just step back and say, this is not science fiction. We are building this. This is happening right now. And the question is, what do we do about it? How do we steer it in the right direction? How do we make sure it’s not used for harm? That’s the real challenge we’re facing,” Roy said.

“How you use a particular thing depends on us at the end of the day. They are not going to overtake us, right? And that’s where it comes back to ethical AI, it comes back to responsible AI. And as I said, these are evolving things. As you discover new things, there’ll be new guardrails, there’ll be new rules, there’ll be new regulations that will come in,” Roy added.

“I mean, just look at ChatGPT. It took three months, three months to reach 100 million users worldwide, three months. Just to give you a perspective, the internet took seven years and mobile phones, which are the most touched device by each one of us, took 16 years, right? So it’s just telling you how fast people are using it because they see a value in it and they’re able to do things faster. So all of it will come back to the use of AI ethically, responsibly, under the right guardrails, and then things will be fine. I think my colleagues said a very nice thing, adopt it, adopt it ethically and see the benefits,” Roy concluded.

Ultimately, the path forward towards AGI must be guided by a commitment to responsible innovation. According to both Venugopalan and Roy, as we embrace the possibilities of AGI, we must also remain vigilant and mindful of the potential consequences. By approaching AGI development with caution and foresight, we can harness its transformative potential while safeguarding against potential risks. The journey towards AGI represents a pivotal moment in human history, requiring collective wisdom and responsibility to navigate safely into the future.

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