Image Source : AP Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

Artificial Intelligence: Tesla CEO Elon Musk expressed his views on the future of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and its impact on employment during a startup and tech event in Paris on Thursday. Speaking remotely via webcam at the Viva Tech event, Musk predicted that AI will eventually eliminate all jobs. He remarked, “Probably none of us will have a job,” suggesting that the advent of advanced AI technology will render traditional employment obsolete, CNN reported. 

However, Musk indicated that this development might not be entirely negative. According to him, he envisions a future where having a job would be “optional,” implying that people could pursue work out of interest rather than necessity. “If you want to do a job that’s kinda like a hobby, you can do a job. But otherwise, AI and the robots will provide any goods and services that you want,” Musk added. 

Universal high income: Beyond basic support

Musk emphasised that for a future where jobs are optional to be successful, there would need to be a “universal high income.” He clarified that this concept should not be confused with Universal Basic Income (UBI). While Musk did not elaborate much on the specifics of universal high income, he distinguished it from UBI, which involves the government providing a set amount of money to all individuals regardless of their earnings.

The Tesla CEO’s comments suggested that a more substantial financial safety net than UBI might be necessary to support individuals in a world where traditional jobs are scarce due to advancements in AI. This approach could ensure that people have sufficient income to maintain a good quality of life even without conventional employment, he added. 

‘AI capabilities have advanced rapidly’

“There would be no shortage of goods or services,” Musk stated. He highlighted that AI capabilities have advanced rapidly over the past few years, advancing so quickly that regulators, companies, and users are still figuring out how to utilize the technology responsibly. In the past also Musk has expressed his concerns about AI. During his keynote on Thursday, he described the technology as his biggest fear. He cited the “Culture Book Series” by Ian Banks, a utopian fictionalized depiction of a society run by advanced technology, as the most realistic and “the best envisioning of a future AI.”

On role for human in AI world

Musk questioned whether people would feel emotionally fulfilled in a future without jobs. “The question will really be one of meaning – if the computer and robots can do everything better than you, does your life have meaning?” Musk said. He added, “I do think there’s perhaps still a role for humans in this – in that we may give AI meaning.”

He also advised parents to control and limit the amount of social media their children consume, saying that social media platforms “are being programmed by a dopamine-maximizing AI.” It should be mentioned here that Industry experts are continuously raising concerns over how various industries and jobs will be transformed as AI proliferates in the market.

(With ANI inputs)

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