Vitalik Buterin Says AI Could Overthrow Humans As Apex Species

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Vitalik Buterin, the renowned co-founder of Ethereum (ETH), recently expressed his thoughts and concerns about the potential capabilities of artificial intelligence (AI). According to Buterin, AI could surpass human intellect and become the apex species in the future.

The Concept of “Apex Species”

The term apex species traditionally refers to the top predator in a given ecosystem, having no natural predators of its own. In recent years, one has witnessed tremendous advancements in AI technology, allowing machines to perform complex tasks once thought to be exclusively within the power of human capability. 

While this progress is undoubtedly impressive, Buterin proposes a paradigm shift by suggesting that technological advances, particularly in AI, may render humans inferior or obsolete. By highlighting the tremendous potential of AI, Buterin contemplates whether humans will continue to occupy the apex position or eventually succumb to superior artificial beings.

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While citing a 2022 survey done by over 4271 machine learning researchers, Buterin suggests that the human race could face possible extinction from AI and humans’ inability to control it “if it decides to turn against us.”

Vitalik Buterin Calls for Caution in AI Advancement

Interestingly, Buterin’s thoughts add credence to the ongoing conversation about the potential risks posed by superintelligent AI if left to advance unchecked. Many individuals have raised concerns that technological advancement could result in the centralization of power and other undesirable outcomes.

Buterin Proposes Brain-Computer Interfaces

To prevent these extreme outcomes and keep humans in charge, Buterin proposes the integration of Brain-Computer Interfaces (BCI). According to him, the BCIs will reduce the communication loop time and give humans control.

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Furthermore, Buterin believes that integrating human thinking with AI could result in a more balanced relationship, where AI improves human abilities without dominating them. This strategy could pave the way for a future in which AI supports and magnifies human values and goals instead of functioning as a separate and potentially alarming entity.

However, Buterin’s statement serves as a call to action, urging individuals to recognize that AI development should not be pursued blindly. Instead, one must approach it, taking into account the inherent ethical dilemmas and potential consequences. Also, it is imperative to establish guidelines and legal frameworks that uphold ethical standards and protect society’s best interests.

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