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Tech Mogul Mark Cuban Shares Elon Musk’s AI Concern, Fears Neural Networks Will Take Our Jobs

Mark Cuban, the billionaire owner of the Dallas Mavericks and star of Shark Tank, has jumped into the conversation of artificial intelligence and whether it is something we as humans should fear. His take on the matter is more in line that of Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla who threw shade at Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg after he said that fearing AI is "pretty irresponsible."

There are two main sides to the debate. Zuckerberg represents the the side that sees AI as being critical in making the world a better place.

"I have pretty strong opinions on this ... I think you can build things and the world gets better, and with AI especially, I’m really optimistic.
I think people who are naysayers and try and drum up these doomsday scenarios are—I just, I don't understand it. It's really negative and in some ways I think it is pretty irresponsible," Zuckerberg recently said during a live Facebook broadcast.

Musk has long been critical of AI and the pace at which it is progressing. To Musk, a Skynet scenario is not just science fiction, but a real possibility. After hearing Zuckerberg's remarks, Musk fired back in a Twitter post saying, "I've talked to Mark about this. His understanding of the subject is limited."

This brings us back to Cuban, who shares some of Musk's concerns with how rapidly AI is advancing and that will ultimately mean for humans.

"It scares the s**t out of me," Cuban told attendees at the Ozy Fest conference in New York City. "However much change you saw over the last 10 years with the iPhone, over the last 20 years with the Internet, over the last 30 years with PCs, etc., that is nothing. Nothing!"

Cuban notes that everything is speeding up with processors getting faster, and that machines are starting to think. "And either you make them think for you or they will take your place and do the thinking for you," Cuban added.

It is an interesting viewpoint, especially in light of the focus on machine learning and analytics. Just recently, Facebook researchers shut down an AI project after two chat bots programmed to communicate in English developed their own language, one that the researchers could not fully decipher but made sense to the bots.

Cuban's fear isn't that robots are going to rise up, but that increasingly sophisticated AI will replace people in high-thinking jobs.

"If you have spreadsheets in your job,... now, the networks can do all that for you. And if they can go through 10 zillion iterations, they will come up with things we can't," Cuban said.

Cuban seems to be taking an outlook that falls somewhere in the middle of Zuckerberg's Utopian vision and Musk's doomsday scenario. And as we know, the truth often lies somewhere in the middle.

Thumbnail Image Source: Wikimedia Commons (TechCrunch)

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