"AI will take over all jobs; it's the most disruptive force in history," Elon Musk tells Sunak.
“AI will take over all jobs; it’s the most disruptive force in history,” Elon Musk tells Sunak.

SpaceX and Tesla founder Elon Musk says that someday artificial intelligence (AI) will do all the work that people used to do.

“I think we are seeing the most disruptive force in history here,” Mr. Musk told Rishi Sunak, the prime minister of the UK. Mr. Musk owns the social media site X. The British government held a two-day conference on AI safety in Bletchley Park, and Mr. Sunak and Mr. Musk talked on TV at the end of the event.

Musk said, “For the first time, we will have something smarter than the smartest person.”

He said, “When that time comes, there will be no need for jobs.” It was hard to say when that time would come. and that it will be hard for people to find value in their lives.

In general, Mr. Musk said AI would “most likely” be a force for good, but there was also a chance that things could go badly.

For someone who works in technology, he said, “I think there might be too much optimism about technology at times.”

During another part of the talk, Mr. Musk said that in the future, there would not be a universal basic income but a universal high income. He did not say how this would be done, though.

Probably a chance

Mr. Musk also agreed with Mr. Sunak’s controversial choice to ask China to the AI Safety Summit, saying that it would be “pointless” if Beijing wasn’t there. He said that China was interested in AI safety (rather than unchecked growth) and that he had talked to the leaders in Beijing about this during his most recent trip there.

Mr. Sunak said, “We need everyone to approach us in the same way if we want to have a chance of solving it.” Along with India, the U.S., the U.K., and 24 other countries, China signed the “Bletchley Declaration” on Wednesday. This is a document that agrees, among other things, that the risks of AI need to be handled by everyone.

AI should be regulated, Mr. Musk said, adding that it would be good to have a “referee” even though it would be “annoying.” It was very important, he said, and he thanked Mr. Sunak for putting together the conference on AI safety.

While talking about the need for rules, Mr. Musk said that public safety was at risk with a “digital superintelligence.”

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