With a new Terminator movie scheduled for release next summer, real fears about artificial intelligence (AI) are making headlines.
Stephen Hawkings, theoretical physicist and author of A Brief History of Time, told the BBC earlier this month that AI “could spell the end of the human race".
Additionally, one of the original founders of Google's DeepMind warned that artificial intelligence is the “number one risk for this century”. Shane Legg said in an interview earlier this year, “Eventually, I think human extinction will probably occur, and technology will likely play a part in this.”
Cue scary music!
Now Google chief executive Eric Schmidt says fears over artificial intelligence and robots replacing human jobs are “misguided”. In fact, the CEO of one of the world’s most powerful tech companies says AI is likely to make humanity better.
“These concerns are normal,” he said during a talk the Financial Times Innovate America event in New York this week. "Go back to the history of the loom. There was absolute dislocation… but I think all of us are better off with more mechanised ways of getting clothes made."
“There's lots of evidence that when computers show up, wages go up and there’s a lot of evidence that people who work with computers are paid more than people without,” he said.
He went on to say that those who don’t currently work with computers should learn to do so quickly, saying that the “correct concern is what we're going to do to improve the education systems and incentive systems globally, in order to get people prepared for this new world, so they can maximise their income.”
Here's a video featuring DeepMind software shown earlier this year where a computer learns how to beat Atari video games. AI specialist Stuart Russell of the University of California says people were "shocked".