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Google’s ex-boss Schmidt says killer AI just 1 or 2 decades away

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MUNICH — Google’s former chief executive Eric Schmidt has sadi that a terminator-style artificial intelligence scenarios are just ‘one or two decades away’ as AI technology is developing so quickly it may soon turn against humans.

“Everyone immediately then wants to talk about all the movie-inspired death scenarios, and I can confidently predict to you that they are one to two decades away. So let’s worry about them, but let’s worry about them in a while,” Schmidt told the crowd at the Munich Security Conference in February, as cited by Defense News.

Schmidt, now a fellow at MIT since stepping down as a Google executive in January this year, presents a more realist, rather than alarmist, take on the development of AI.

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He maintains that the benefits far outweigh the risks when it comes to AI and that we as a species merely need to keep a tight leash on any and all advancements. He recently highlighted how Google is helping to prevent blindness in diabetics using AI.

China has already begun working on a national AI program and hopes to become the world leader in the technology in the next decade.

Mr Schmidt warned that Europe and the US lagged far behind the Chinese when it came to resource and investment in the field.

The billionaire tech entrepreneur, Elon Musk, has also voiced fears over the potential threat AI technology poses.

“If you’re not concerned about AI safety, you should be. Vastly more risk than North Korea,” he said last year.

Agencies

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Google+ to shut down after private data of about 500,000 users exposed

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KATHMANDU — Alphabet Inc’s Google is going to shut down the consumer version of its failed social network Google+ and tighten its data-sharing policies after announcing that private profile data of about 500,000 users may have been exposed to hundreds of external developers, the company said on Monday.

Google, however, kept silent for more than six months its discovery of a bug that put at risk the personal data of hundreds of thousands of Google+ users.

The issue was discovered and patched in March as part of a review of how Google shares data with other applications, Google said in a blog post.

But the delay until October in revealing the incident could reignite long-standing complaints from federal and state officials that tech giants such as Google are reckless with user privacy.

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Google feared disclosure would invite comparison to Facebook’s leak of user information to data firm Cambridge Analytica, the Wall Street Journal reported earlier.

The Journal reported that Google opted not to disclose the security issue at the time due to fears of regulatory scrutiny, citing unnamed sources and a memo prepared by Google’s legal and policy staff for senior executives, adding that chief executive Sundar Pichai had been briefed on the issue.

Google announced in its blog post Monday that it will mostly discontinue Google+ limiting it to only business and other enterprise customers.

The search engine giant has also announced new curbs on the information, such as call logs and contact lists, that outsider developers can gather on Android, the Google operating system used by most of the world’s smartphones. And it will also impose new limits on the data shared about users of its popular email service, Gmail.

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