We are racing toward a future we barely understand. Our stuff will be smart, sometimes smarter than us. Our cars will be their own backseat drivers. Our doctors will get second opinions from silicon. Much of the most eye-popping innovation we’ll see in the coming decades will be a direct result of the collection of technologies best known as Artificial Intelligence.

And it scares the hell out of people.

There are now multiple organizations, including The Future for Life Institute and the OpenAI project, that have picked up the baton of AI, seeking to spread it, understand it, control it and maybe police it. This week we added the Partnership on AI to the mix. It’s an unusual consortium of technology and AI competitors: Amazon, Facebook, Google (via DeepMind), Microsoft and IBM. Each is deeply involved in the development and distribution of AI- and Machine Leaning-infused products and services. Some, like Amazon and Microsoft, compete in the AI-backed digital assistance space. Others, like IBM, Google and Facebook munge mounds of personal and public data to feed current and future AI engines. …

read more