Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence by Max Tegmark

The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom. – Isaac Asimov

Just finished reading Life 3.0 and I can say it does deserve being put on a mandatory reading list for anyone working in AI field.

This is not a popular science book, but a great summary of the current thinking about the AI technology, its implications and potential scenarios for the future of our species.  Tegmark is doing an excellent job in clarifying the terms and dispelling common myths surrounding the AI.

While there is a fair bit of futurology in the book, it also lists a number of near-term issues that we need to start thinking about. This is by far the most balanced book on the subject that I have read.

The debate on whether regulation of AI is a) needed and b) timely is still ongoing, and Tegmark’s book is providing a solid foundation to build on.

Whether this discussion is timely – is a great question. One thing is certain, it’s better to have it early than late. When Henri Becquerel and Marie and Pierre Curie discovered radioactivity in the end of the 19th century – was it premature to discuss Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty? Probably yes, as it took another 50 years to develop the first nuclear bomb.

However with AI we might not have the luxury of time – once the first general artificial intelligence (AGI) is created it might be too late. And even before that happens we as a society will need to make many important decisions that will direct the research, regulate technology, adjust legal frameworks, prepare the economy for the inevitable mass redundancy of human labor. For that we need the governments to understand the AI and

It is very important to start this conversation now.

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