Listen up, folks: Elon Musk is going to build the world's first sentient robots — but don't worry, he has a workaround to avoid a "Terminator"-esque catastrophe.
It may sound like a bit of a stretch, but that doesn't mean the Tesla and SpaceX CEO doesn't believe it will happen. In a recent tweet, he claimed out of nowhere that his car company's recently-teased humanoid robot, Optimus, "might play a role" in bringing about artificial general intelligence (AGI) — a term meaning AI that meets or even surpasses the intelligence of a human being.
"Tesla AI might play a role in AGI," Musk tweeted, "given that it trains against the outside world, especially with the advent of Optimus."
For those not steeped in Elonspeak, here's a translation. Tesla's AI research and development department, tasked with making the company's self-driving cars smarter, may soon have a hand in making sentient AI a reality.
That's because, as Musk put it, the car's AI will incorporate information and data from its surroundings in real-time, and become even smarter once the Optimus robots are launched.
When Tesla's Optimus will make its grand entrance — if ever — remains to be seen. So far, we've only seen a performer in a spandex suit dancing on stage at the company's AI Day last year.
Last year, for instance, former Google executive Mo Gawat warned that bloodthirsty robots like Skynet from "The Terminator" series are inevitable — a sentiment in line with Musk's own belief that sentient robots "are coming anyway."
When a fanboy asked about the potential for "AGI gone awry" on Twitter, Musk responded that Tesla will do its "best" to keep it in check, and that "decentralized control of the robots will be critical."
Though the assurance is welcome, the world's richest man — as usual — remained quiet on the details.
It's no surprise that AGI rallying cries are coming from the man whose purported mission it is to make humans a multiplanetary species. All the more reason to take concerns over an impending singularity event seriously.
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