As the face and media-anointed conscience of generative AI, OpenAI Chief Executive Sam Altman understands that people are terrified of artificial intelligence — and he thinks we should be scared.
An Urgent Need for Regulation
“It would be super-unreasonable not to” get ahead of the technology with some form of regulation, he says in a New York Magazine profile published Monday. And, in an admission that is drawing comparisons to J. Robert Oppenheimer, the tortured father of the atom bomb, Altman admits society should feel good — but not great — about him as our AI leader.
Prophecies of Existential Risk
During a world tour outlining the dangers of AI, Altman has linked himself to Oppenheimer in prophesizing the existential risk of AI and the necessity for a regulatory agency modeled after the International Atomic Energy Agency, as detailed in the opus profile.
Disconnection from Reality
Altman ominously referred to “the arc of technology and societal change on a long time horizon” while acknowledging he’s “pretty disconnected from the reality of life for most people.”
Advancing the Talk of Regulation
Altman has done his part to advance the talk of regulation, testifying before Congress and meeting behind closed doors with members of the Senate and the CEOs of Tesla Inc., Microsoft Corp., Alphabet Inc.’s Google, Meta Platforms Inc., and others in developing a future framework for responsible AI use.
The Inevitable Regulation
Then again, he and his tech brethren may have no choice in the matter. Congressional members are crafting AI legislation while others call for a government agency to oversee the technology.
Investigation into OpenAI
At the same time, the Federal Trade Commission has launched an investigation into OpenAI’s alleged extensive violation of consumer-protection laws.