Sam Altman Shares Optimistic view of AI future.
After a tour of Nigeria and Europe, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman shared his positive outlook on the future of AI. Altman believes that AI has the potential to address significant global challenges like climate change and poverty while also creating new industries and job opportunities.
During his tour, Altman engaged with government officials, entrepreneurs, and academics, witnessing the strong interest in AI in both Nigeria and Europe. He observed firsthand the practical applications of AI in solving real-world problems, such as using AI for climate-resilient crop growth and disease diagnosis.
While acknowledging that AI is still in its early stages, Altman remains confident in its future impact. He urges governments and businesses to invest in AI research and development while emphasizing the need for ethical guidelines.
Altman’s optimistic perspective aligns with that of many experts. A recent report by the McKinsey Global Institute predicts that AI could contribute $13 trillion to the global economy by 2030 and create 95 million new jobs.
Despite potential risks like job displacement and bias, Altman believes that the benefits of AI outweigh these concerns. He envisions a future where AI contributes to a better world for all.
Sam Altman Shares Optimistic view of AI future
A couple of days ago, at a similar event at University College London, Altman warned that overreaching European regulation could lead to OpenAI leaving the continent altogether. While he already backtracked on Twitter, saying that “we are excited to continue to operate here and of course have no plans to leave,” he spent some time explaining his thinking.
“We plan to comply, we really like Europe and we want to offer our services in Europe but we just want to be able to make sure that we’re technically able to,” Altman said.
“The discussion has been too focused on the negatives,” Altman said “It does seem the balance has gotten off given all the value that people are getting from these tools these days.”
He asked once again for a “global regulatory framework” similar to nuclear or biotech regulation. “I think it’s going to get to a good place. I think it’s important that we do this. Regulatory clarity is a good thing,” he said.
AI as a tool to augment humans
In many ways, Altman views AI as a tool that can be leveraged by humans to create new things, unlock potential and change how we should think about specific problems. For instance, he doesn’t believe that AI presents a risk to employment.
“This idea that artificial intelligence is going to progress to a point where humans don’t have any work to do or don’t have any purpose has never resonated with me,” Altman said. “There will be some people who choose not to work, and I think that’s great. I think that should be a valid choice and there’s a lot of other ways to find meaning in life. But I’ve never seen convincing evidence that what we do with better tools is to work less.”
For instance, when talking about journalism, Altman says that AI can help journalists focus on what they do best: more investigation and spending more time finding new information that is worth sharing. “What if each of your journalists had a team of 100 people working for them in different areas?” he said.