Vint Cerf, the “founder of the internet” and top evangelist at Google, has some advice for business leaders trying to close deals quickly involving chat AI: “Don’t.”
At a Mountain View conference on Monday, Cerf appealed to delegates not to rush into investing in conversational AI just because “it is a hot issue.” The warning coincides with a surge in ChatGPT’s popularity.
The meeting at the Monday conference heard Cerf say, “There is an ethical question here that I hope some of you will examine.” He commented about Google’s Bard conversational AI unveiled last week. “Everyone is talking about ChatGPT or Google’s version of that, and we know it doesn’t always work the way we would like it to,” he said.
He issued this warning when major tech firms like Google, Meta, and Microsoft debated how to maintain their position as market leaders in conversational AI while swiftly enhancing a system that still frequently makes mistakes.
The systems still have a long way to go before they are broadly used, according to Alphabet Chairman John Hennessy, who earlier in the day noted that several issues with inaccuracy and “toxicity” need to be resolved before even testing on the general populace.
Since 2005, Cerf has held the positions of vice president and “chief Internet evangelist” at Google. Because he collaborated on the part of the architecture used to lay the groundwork for the internet, he is regarded as one of its “Fathers.”
Although the technology is “very cool, even though it doesn’t work quite perfectly all the time,” Cerf advised against giving in to the desire to invest.
“If you think, man, I can sell this to investors because it’s a hot topic and everyone will throw money at me,’ don’t do that,” he said. Don’t do that, remarked Cerf, provoking laughter from the audience. “Think carefully, and you were correct in saying that we cannot always forecast what will happen with these technologies, and to be completely honest, the majority of the issue is humans, which explains why neither they nor we have evolved in the last 400 or the last 4,000 years.
In what seemed to reference universal human avarice, Cerf stated, “They will attempt to accomplish that which is to their profit and not yours.” Therefore, we must consider it and exercise caution when utilising these technologies.
To add an emoji to the end of each line, Cerf claimed he tried to ask one of the systems to do so. When he informed the system that it had not done that, it apologised but didn’t alter its behaviour. He stated of the chatbots, “We are a long way from awareness or self-awareness.
He claimed there is a discrepancy between what it promises to do and what it does. That is the issue; you can’t distinguish between an appropriate response and one elegantly delivered. Cerf gave an example when he asked a chatbot to give him a biography. He claimed that despite the bot’s incorrect response, it was presented as fact.
“I believe that engineers like me should be in charge of attempting to find a method to tame some of these technologies so that they are less likely to hurt people on the technical side. A poor piece of fiction is one thing, depending on the context. Giving someone advice can have adverse medical effects. It’s crucial to determine how to reduce the worst-case scenario.