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Eye On A.I.

Eye on A.I. tracks new developments in artificial intelligence research, hosted by longtime New York Times journalist Craig S. Smith. In each episode, Craig will discuss aspects of AI with some of the people making a difference in the space, putting incremental advances into a broader context. AI is about to change your world, so pay attention.

Nov 29, 2023

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On episode 158 of Eye on AI, host Craig Smith dives deep into the world of AI safety, governance, and open-source dilemmas with Connor Leahy, CEO of Conjecture, an AI company specializing in AI safety.

Connor, known for his pioneering work in open-source large language models, shares his views on the monopolization of AI technology and the risks of keeping such powerful technology in the hands of a few.

The episode starts with a discussion on the dangers of centralizing AI power, reflecting on OpenAI's situation and the broader implications for AI governance. Connor draws parallels with historical examples, emphasizing the need for widespread governance and responsible AI development. He highlights the importance of creating AI architectures that are understandable and controllable, discussing the challenges in ensuring AI safety in a rapidly evolving field.

We also explore the complexities of AI ethics, touching upon the necessity of policy and regulation in shaping AI's future. We discuss the potential of AI systems, the importance of public understanding and involvement in AI governance, and the role of governments in regulating AI development.

The episode concludes with a thought-provoking reflection on the future of AI and its impact on society, economy, and politics. Connor urges the need for careful consideration and action in the face of AI's unprecedented capabilities, advocating for a more cautious approach to AI development.

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(00:00) Preview

(00:25) Netsuite by Oracle

(02:42) Introducing Connor Leahy

(06:35) The Mayak Facility: A Historical Parallel

(13:39) Open Source AI: Safety and Risks

(19:31) Flaws of Self-Regulation in AI

(24:30) Connor’s Policy Proposals for AI

(31:02) Implementing a Kill Switch in AI Systems

(33:39) The Role of Public Opinion and Policy in AI

(41:00) AI Agents and the Risk of Disinformation

(49:26) Survivorship Bias and AI Risks

(52:43) A Hopeful Outlook on AI and Society

(57:08) Closing Remarks and A word From Our Sponsors