December 1, 2023
John Carmack expects a breakthrough in artificial general intelligence by 2030

Visionary: While AI has been at the forefront of most tech industry conversations this year, the new wave of generative AI is still a far cry from the concept of artificial general intelligence (AGI). However, renowned developer John Carmack believes that such technology will appear around 2030.

Of course, Carmack is best known as the co-founder of id Software and the lead programmer on Wolfenstein 3D, Doom, and Quake. He left Oculus in December last year to focus on his new AGI startup Keen Technologies.

In an announcement video (via The Reg) revealing that Keane has hired Richard Sutton, chief scientific advisor at the Alberta Machine Intelligence Institute, Carmack said the new hire was ideally positioned to work on AGI .

It is often pointed out that the term artificial intelligence is a misnomer when used to describe things like ChatGPT. Today’s large language model-driven tools don’t actually ‘think’ like a person, even though they may look like that. On the other hand, an AGI functions exactly like a human being, capable of learning and reasoning and capable of completing any task given to it. Data from Star Trek and, more worryingly, HAL 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey are often cited as examples of advanced AGI from science fiction.

Scientists and researchers argue that a true AGI may be decades away. Sutton says current coding technology makes creating AGI impractical, adding that he aims to have “prototype AI showing signs of life” by 2030.

In August last year, Carmack announced that he had raised $20 million in seed funding for Keane. This is a small amount compared to other AI companies – Microsoft has invested more than $13 billion in OpenAI – but Sutton and Carmack believe they could have a huge impact on the industry.

“Nobody has a solution today, we feel like there’s not much left to do,” Carmack said. “There are fundamental research questions that need to be answered, and we have internal projects and angles of attack,” he said. The creator of the FPS genre said he hopes future textbooks on how to create AGI will include a chapter on Keane and his upcoming work.

“We’re six, seven, eight years away from something really big and important being shown publicly.”

Carmack later suggested that the state of AI today could be traced back to his own work on Quake as it was the game that really drove the demand for GPUs, although he was not interested in the ability of GPUs to handle other computing. Also credit Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang for recognizing this. Work.

In July, OpenAI said it was aware of the potential risks of creating AI smarter than people, including causing the extinction of the human race, and was creating a team to mitigate the risks.


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