China’s AI dominance worries Pentagon and other US officials

The Pentagon’s first chief software officer resigned abruptly earlier this month, and we now know exactly why: Nicholas Chilen, former CSO of the U.S. Air Force and Space Force, told the Financial Times that the U.S. has “no chance of a competitive fight” against China in 15 to 20 years. And when it comes to artificial intelligence.

Chilan, a 37-year-old technology entrepreneur, added that many government agencies have cyber security at the “kindergarten level” and that companies like Google are hurting the United States by not doing much with the military in AI, as Chinese companies were making a “massive investment” in AI. , It does not depend on the morality of everything. And since America has already lost AI competition by the time you quit your job, it’s a bit dramatic, Chilan is not the only person who is concerned about China’s dominance in this regard.

We can all agree that no one wants China to invent a real-world version of Skynet, the almighty AI that occupies the planet. Terminator Movies but we don’t want the United States to do that. But what does the finish line of this AI race actually look like? And does the United States really want to win at any cost?

For years, scholars have compared the AI ​​race to the space race – and warned that the United States was losing it. This is a simple analogy, as it helps Americans put the current conflict with countries like China and Russia in the familiar context of the Cold War. Many argued that we had found ourselves in the Second Cold War and that the country that won the AI ​​competition would take the throne as the dominant superpower. But the AI ​​revolution is not just about war or geopolitical domination. What we are running to create will transform almost every aspect of our lives, from how we conduct business to how we process information, how we move around.

It is therefore imperative that the United States be thought to provide fast charging in the future filled with automated vehicles, unlimited data collection and full-time surveillance. These applications will enable next-generation AI, and if a small group of powerful technology companies and / or the U.S. military rush to innovation without proper patrol rails, this world-changing technology could have some deadly unintended consequences at the Biden Munich Security Conference. The February speech called on the United States and Europe to work together responsibly to innovate new technologies.

“We must create rules that will govern the advancement of technology and the rules of behavior in cyberspace, artificial intelligence, biotechnology so that they are used to lift people up, not to bring them down,” Biden said. “We must stand up for the democratic values ​​that make it possible for us to achieve any of these, pushing back against those who would normalize monopoly and repression.

You may also be looking at present-day China to see what the future holds for a more AI-centric society. As Kai-Fu Lee argued in his book AI Super Powers: China, Silicon Valley and the New World Order, China has become more aggressive in implementing AI breakthroughs, especially in surveillance and data collection applications, thanks to a lack of government support and oversight that allows some technology companies there to compete and dominate the entire industry. WeChat and its parent company Tencent are perfect examples. At WeChat, privacy doesn’t seem to be a priority, but the amount of data the app can collect is certainly helpful for AI training.

Imagine, if you will, that Facebook has acquired Visa and MasterCard and connected everything to the function, as well as invested money in Amazon and Uber and OpenTable and many more, and created an ecosystem that once you login to Facebook, all these things One click away, and then another click, you can pay for them, “Lee told New York Magazine.

This is the kind of winning method that puts China ahead in the AI ​​competition. China also seems to have played a role in establishing the standards of algorithmic ethics. Just last week, the country issued guidelines on AI ethics for the first time. The United States has long known that algorithms can be racist or sexist, and the Pentagon adopted its guidelines on ethical AI about two years ago. And as we have recently learned, the AI ​​that is used to serve content like Facebook and YouTube can be used to radicalize people and undermine democracy. That’s why – especially in the wake of Facebook’s whistleblower scandal that internal research has revealed that its products are harmful to some users, including teenage girls – U.S. lawmakers seem more interested in talking about how to control algorithms than defeating China. AI race.

The two ways are not mutually exclusive. A former head of military software, Chilean has certainly gained the right to have an opinion on how fast the United States is developing its cyber defense and artificially intelligent computers. And now that he’s taking his knowledge of how the Pentagon works in the private sector, he’s likely to make good money by resolving his concerns. For the rest of us, the rise of AI should not be seen as a race against China. It’s a lot like a high-stakes poker game.

This story was first published in the Record Newsletter. Register here So you don’t miss the next one!

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