- Bill Gates spoke to Forbes about artificial intelligence and how the Microsoft founding magnate thinks it will change the labor market as we know it.
- The tycoon assures that we are in the presence of “breakthroughs of great importance” in this world and that AI is part of that progress from which there is no return.
- OpenAI and Microsoft announced in January 2023 the third cycle of a long-term relationship.
Bill Gates’ attraction to Artificial Intelligence begins in his early days in the software world, even before the founding of Microsoft in 1975. Almost 50 years later, the American tycoon, investor, author and philanthropist admits his fascination for this world, especially after ChatGPT’s successful entry into the cyber space.
“Artificial intelligence will be debated. It will be the most discussed topic this year, and I think it’s perfect,” said the tycoon in an interview conducted by Forbes, where he especially emphasizes the artificial intelligence chatbot prototype created by Open AI.
Although artificial intelligence is nowhere near being the protagonist of a great scientific invention, Gates assures that we are in the presence of “breakthroughs of great importance” in this world and a case like this “could be feasible in the next decade”.
“It will change the labor market relatively. And it will make us ask ourselves, really, where the limits are,” said the founder of Microsoft, who several years ago foreshadowed the success of artificial intelligence programs such as ChatGPT, with other significant events in the world of technology, such as the Internet and the creation of personal computers.
Bill Gates on AI
Despite stepping down from his company’s board of directors in 2020, Gates spends much of his free time visiting Microsoft headquarters. One of the main topics in the meetings is precisely artificial intelligence, and how it can change the way software products are developed and used.
“The idea that tools can see, hear and write is what the technology sector is looking for in the long term. It’s always been very interesting to me. And so as these learning techniques have begun to unfold positively, especially tools for speech and image recognition, I’m fascinated by the inventions we may need before artificial intelligence is truly intelligent, such as passing tests and typing fluently,” Gates said.
Microsoft and OpenAI partnership
In the middle of last year, Gates met with OpenAI founder and CEO Greg Brockman to discuss different tools for generative AI, a machine learning system that can create unique content, from music and other artistic expressions to sprawling virtual worlds.
OpenAI and Microsoft announced in January 2023 the third cycle of a long-term relationship, through a multi-year investment of billions, to continue the advances made in artificial intelligence and ensure that the benefit is shared broadly with the rest of the world.
“They managed to convince me that there is a growing behavior of great importance while extending these language tools,” Gates said of ChatGPT and emphasized what he believes are its benefits: “The idea of a remote math instructor for students, or a medical consultation available in Africa for people who, generally, would never have access to a doctor, is a magnificent thing.”
For Bill Gates, what the artificial intelligence research company achieved is very impressive. “They certainly lead in many aspects of artificial intelligence, which people can see through ChatGPT’s tools,” Gates told Forbes.
This artificial intelligence chatbot prototype attracts about 100 million users a month, according to Swiss financial services company UBS. ChatGPT reached 100 million in less time than major platforms such as TikTok, Spotify or Instagram.
Progress that should be worrying?
The tycoon is aware of the analyses that consider the landing of artificial intelligence as a threat to manual jobs, but he believes that the evolution in this sector will not be as rapid as estimated.
“The short-term issue with artificial intelligence is productivity. It will generate much higher productivity, which will affect the labor market. The long-term issue, which has not yet arisen, is what generates concern among people: control.
“What happens if the humans in charge of controlling the AI go down the wrong path? If people lose control, what does that mean? To me these are the valid decisions,” he said.
However, Gates prefers to focus on the positive news and the impressive fluency demonstrated by tools such as OpenAI’s artificial intelligence chatbot, a project he was involved in from the beginning and which he still believes needs to be perfected.
“The tool is still imperfect. No one assures that it won’t make mistakes, and it’s not intuitive enough. With topics like mathematics it could be totally wrong.” But, even before its launch, “its confidence in an incorrect answer was really amazing,” Gates said.
Bill Gates: “A fun game”
For the time being, Bill Gates takes the artificial intelligence chatbot as a fun game and one that encourages the creativity of its developers. “I have fun playing with these tools,” he admitted.
“It always amazes me that, despite the fact that the reasons I log in are serious, I often go to ChatGPT for fun. And after reading a poem written by the tool, I have to confess that I couldn’t have done it myself,” he explained.
Leave a Reply