Elon Musk Donates $10 Million To AI Research, Hopes To Prevent Skynet

If there's one man who understands all the potential of artificial intelligence, it's Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk. You might recall that this past fall, we wrote about one of Musk's comments regarding how future AI developments could lead us to "[summon] the demon". Quite simply, we don't want a "Skynet" to happen. In the 80s, the mere thought of that would have sounded ridiculous, but today? Things have certainly changed.

elon musk robots
Elon Musk stares at a robot at Tesla'a manufacturing facility in Fremont, California (Source: Steve Jurvetson)

Musk is now willing to convert his concerns into funding in order to make sure that Skynet never comes to fruition. With a generous $10 million donation to the Future of Life Institute, funds will be handed out in the form of grants to those researching AI as well as those dealing with AI in different fields, such as ethics, law, and economics.

FLI makes it clear that anyone is eligible to receive a grant, stating, "The best ideas will win regardless of whether they come from academia, industry or elsewhere."

Musk's donation has garnered a lot of support up to this point, especially from Jaan Tallinn, one of FLI's founders, and also the founder of Skype. He puts it brilliantly, "Building advanced AI is like launching a rocket. The first challenge is to maximize acceleration, but once it starts picking up speed, you also need to focus on steering."

Those interested in applying for a grant will want to head on over to the Future of Life website on the 22nd, which is when applications will be accepted.

Let's hope that we'll be hearing a lot more about what comes from this venture in the future.


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