Elon Musk, like the rest of us, does not want to see our world go the ways of Skynet and donates to A.I. safety research to keep it that way. Musk’s donation went to the Future of Life Institute, and is quoted saying, “Here are all these leading AI researchers saying that AI safety is important. I agree with them, so I’m today committing $10M to support research aimed at keeping AI beneficial for humanity.” In the same blog, Future of Life Institute explains how they will spend the money:
The $10M program will be administered by the Future of Life Institute, a non-profit organization whose scientific advisory board includes AI-researchers Stuart Russell and Francesca Rossi. “I love technology, because it’s what’s made 2015 better than the stone age”, says MIT professor and FLI president Max Tegmark. “Our organization studies how we can maximize the benefits of future technologies while avoiding potential pitfalls.”
The research supported by the program will be carried out around the globe via an open grants competition, through an application portal at http://futureoflife.org that will open by Monday January 19. The plan is to award the majority of the grant funds to AI researchers, and the remainder to AI-related research involving other fields such as economics, law, ethics and policy (a detailed list of examples can be found here). “Anybody can send in a grant proposal, and the best ideas will win regardless of whether they come from academia, industry or elsewhere”, says FLI co-founder Viktoriya Krakovna.
Along with research grants, the program will also include meetings and outreach programs aimed at bringing together academic AI researchers, industry AI developers and other key constituents to continue exploring how to maximize the societal benefits of AI; one such meeting was held in Puerto Rico last week with many of the open-letter signatories.