Musk, Zuckerberg and Gates join US senators for AI forum

The top Democrat in the U.S. Senate is inviting U.S. tech leaders, including Tesla CEO Elon Musk, Meta Platforms CEO Mark Zuckerberg, and Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai, to the Capitol on Wednesday for a closed-door forum on how Congress should establish safeguards on artificial intelligence.

“For Congress to legislate on artificial intelligence is to engage in one of the most complex and important issues that Congress has ever faced,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Tuesday.

Lawmakers are grappling with how to mitigate the dangers of this emerging technology, which saw a boom in investment and consumer popularity following the release of OpenAI’s ChatGPT.

Lawmakers want safeguards against potentially dangerous “deepfakes,” election interference and attacks on critical infrastructure.

Other expected attendees include Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, Jensen Huang, CEO of Nvidia, Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, Arvind Krishna, CEO of IBM, Bill Gates, former CEO of Microsoft, Liz Shuler, President of the AFL-CIO, and Senators Mike Rounds, Martin Heinrich and Todd Young.

Mr. Schumer, who spoke with Mr. Musk in April about AI, wants participants to discuss “why Congress needs to act, what questions to ask, and how to build consensus for safe innovation.” . Sessions start at 10 a.m. and last until 5 p.m.

In March, Mr. Musk and a group of AI experts and executives called for a six-month pause in the development of systems more powerful than OpenAI’s GPT-4, citing potential risks to society .

This week, Congress is holding three separate hearings on AI. Microsoft President Brad Smith told the Senate Judiciary subcommittee on Tuesday that Congress should “require security curbs on AI that controls or manages critical infrastructure.”

Mr. Smith compared AI protection measures to requiring circuit breakers to be installed in buildings, school buses to be equipped with emergency brakes and airplanes to have collision avoidance systems.

Regulators around the world have been scrambling to develop rules governing the use of generative AI, which can create text and generate images whose artificial origin is virtually undetectable.

Adobe, IBM, Nvidia and five other companies said Tuesday they have signed on to President Joe Biden’s voluntary AI commitments, which include measures such as watermarking AI-generated content.

The commitments announced in July aimed to ensure that the power of AI is not used for destructive purposes. Google, OpenAI and Microsoft signed these commitments in July. The White House is also working on an executive order on AI. (Reporting by David Shepardson; writing by Lincoln Feast.)

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