Elon Musk has been accused of talking about things "he knows little about" by a world-leading expert in machine learning.
Michael I. Jordan, named the "world's most influential computer scientist" by Science in 2016, said that the average person was wildly misinformed about artificial intelligence in a recent interview on the Artificial Intelligence with Lex Fridman podcast – and didn't shy away from pointing the finger.
He said: "Musk, god bless him, will say things about AI that he knows very little about and he leads people astray when he talks about things he doesn’t know anything about.
“Trying to program a computer so that it understands language so that it can be involved in a dialogue like we’re having right now, ain’t gonna happen in our lifetime.
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“You can fake it, you can mimic old sentences that humans use and retread them, but the deep understanding of language? No, it’s not going to happen.”
Elon Musk’s secretive company Neuralink is developing brain-machine interfaces with the aim of testing on humans this year.
It is hoped that brain implants will one day enable paralysed humans to control computers and smartphones with their brains – but some futurists claim we could even end up being able to "download" skills into our brain like in sci-fi blockbuster The Matrix.
Talking about other figureheads in science, Prof Jordan said that some unnamed talking heads will deliberately exaggerate the capabilities of their tech to gain funding.
He said: "I think I would like to say this very strongly because a lot of young people think we are on the verge.
"Because a lot of people who don’t talk about it clearly let it be understood that yes, ‘this is brain-inspired, we’re kind of close, breakthroughs are on the horizon’.
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"And unscrupulous people who need money for their labs – this might sound unscrupulous – but people oversell.
"You know, ‘I need money for a lab, I’m studying computational neuroscience, I’m going to oversell it’, and so there’s been too much of that."
Elon Musk himself appeared on the Lex Fridman podcast last November and claimed that soon artificial intelligence will become "indistinguishable" from human consciousness and outwit us at every level.
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