Musk Believes AI Weapons Should Be Restricted

By Michelle Jones

Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s concerns about artificial intelligence are well-documented, but he has now taken his concerns to the next level.

Musk and more than 100 other experts and engineers have signed a letter to the United Nations which urges the international organization to regulate AI weapons.

Musk joins other engineers in call for regulation of AI weapons

Although Musk is perhaps the most famous person to sign the open letter, Mustafa Suleyman, co-founder of Google’s DeepMind, and Gary Marcus, founder and CEO of Geometric Intelligence, which was acquired by Uber, also signed it.

All of those who put their name to it are considered to be leaders and experts in the area of artificial intelligence. They addressed the letter to the UN Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons.

The engineers and experts who signed the open letter to the UN warn that AI weapons could lead to a “third revolution in warfare.” The letter focuses specifically on autonomous weapons, and they’re concerned about a new arms race focused on these types of weapons. The letter was released in Melbourne today at a international conference focused on artificial intelligence.

A warning about “killer robots”

The engineers who warned the UN about AI weapons were especially focused on so-called “killer robots,” which are futuristic weapons that can be programmed to hit specific people or other targets. In theory, these robots would be designed to operate out on the battlefield autonomously without direct input from people.