Fundamental Risks to Civilisation: Team Climate Change or Team AI?

While I’m still skeptical when it comes to most use-cases that are currently dubbed to be Artificial Intelligence, Mr. Musk goes out of its way to warn people about its potential downsides.
I’ve linked to Kevin Kelly’s previous take on this1, but I think Musk’s argument should make you pause. Given that the main concern driving his call for pre-emptive regulation is a fundamental risk to civilization, you have to wonder whether these calls would, in the short term, be more fruitfully directed at the risk of climate change.

“AI is a rare case where I think we need to be proactive in regulation instead of reactive. Because I think by the time we are reactive in AI regulation, it’s too late.”

“Normally the way regulations are set up is a while bunch of bad things happen, there’s a public outcry, and after many years a regulatory agency is set up to regulate that industry,” he continued. “It takes forever. That, in the past, has been bad but not something which represented a fundamental risk to the existence of civilization. AI is a fundamental risk to the existence of human civilization.”

  1. Kevin Kelly: The Myth of a Superhuman AI, Wired Magazine