Stuart Russell on Artificial Intelligence: What if we succeed?

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Stuart Russell is a professor of Computer Science at UC Berkeley as well as co-author of the most popular textbook in the field – Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach. Given that it has been translated into 13 languages and is used in more than 1,300 universities in 118 countries, I can hardly think of anyone more qualified or more appropriate to discuss issues related to AI or the technological singularity. Unfortunately, we had problems with our internet connection and, consequently, the video recording is among the worst I have ever published. Thus this episode may be a good candidate to listen to as an audio file only. However, given how prominent Prof. Russel is and how generous he was with his time, I thought it would be a sad loss if I didn’t publish the video also, poor quality as it is.

During our 90 min conversation with Stuart Russell we cover a variety of interesting topics such as: his love for physics and computer science; human preferences, expected utility and decision making; why his textbook on AI was “unreasonably successful”; his dream that AI will contribute to a Golden Age of Humanity; aligning human and AI objectives; the proper definition of Artificial Intelligence; Machine Learning vs Deep Learning; debugging and the King Midas problem; the control problem and Russell’s 3 Laws; provably safe mathematical systems and the nature of intelligence; the technological singularity; Artificial General Intelligence and consciousness…

As always you can listen to or download the audio file above or scroll down and watch the video interview in full. To show your support you can write a review on iTunes, make a direct donation or become a patron on Patreon.


Singularity Weblog says:

Thank you for the good words of support and encouragement guys and please forgive me the terrible video recording quality of this interview. I did my best and was very disappointed but I hope you agree with me that it is still good and worth watching 😉

funmeister says:

Stuart Russell's last note, his question, that is the essence of the title of this video and what caught my attention and why I first clicked on it, is sublime. Worth watching the entire video for.

shake says:

@ 18:00 I am a big fan of your (a previous patron) so please do not take this the wrong way.
You cannot mix Futuristic thoughts with a Leftist / Progressive / Socialistic mentality. Let people with lesser minds worry about animal rights, climate change and social inequality. You are the great Socrates.

Nature itself kills animals. Why should we humans not kill animals as well?

Have you ever considered that Darwinian evolution is simply using humans to eliminate lesser / weaker animals such as Owls and Elephants? We are not on the verge of a "6th extinction" but on the verge of a 2nd creation. Humans may have killed "trillions of fish" as you pointed out. However in the coming century, humans may create a million new biological and mechanical species.

Do not let your own personal morality (which leans far too leftward for an true intellectual IMHO) get in the way of real Darwinian progress.

Sincerely, A Techno Libertarian


Jose Noway says:

Great interviewees and you waste the time on inane moralizing, and prog religion assholery. Get back to me when the juice stopped being "tribal" and "racist".

VRreando says:

Everyone prefers to know better themselves (a positive and logic desire), so at that stage if the AI knows our preferences better than us, we ll prefer to have this ability, we ll prefer to be AI
So basically he is saying indirectly: lets become AI entities to solve the control problem

Chandra Shekhar says:

1.23.47:- Thanks for asking such questions………………..but people like him should be for more than 2 hours interview…………………..they are a GEM……………..

Chandra Shekhar says:


Chandra Shekhar says:

1.19.00: Apple is now 7 nm chip………….we are now approaching quantum computing…………………we are forced towards quantum computing………………we need to ask questions about the same also………………whats the impact of quantum computing……………….

Chandra Shekhar says:

1.18.00:- Thanks thanks thanks for asking about TIMELINES………………..

Chandra Shekhar says:

1.15.16:- Thanks Nikola for FINALLY asking about Technological Singularity……………..

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