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Softbank CEO Son says AGI will arrive within the next ten years

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF

Today’s AI will impact up to 80% of jobs, allegedly, and AGI is much much more powerful and capable so its impact will be multiple times greater on society.

 

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SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son, who has previously said that Artificial Super Intelligence (ASI) will arrive circa 2047, has now said that he believes Artificial General Intelligence (AGI), artificial intelligence that surpasses human intelligence in almost all areas, will be realized within 10 years. And, based on recent developments in the world such as OpenAI’s GPT4 AI that uses a Master of Experts Model, and going even further back Google’s ‘pseudo AGI project’ Impala, I’m inclined to agree with him. Albeit with perhaps some caveats around regulators eyeballing and approval of the technology, the time it takes to safety test, and so forth.

 

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On a side note here though it’s also worth noting that the founder and ex CEO of DeepMind, one of the world’s leading AI development houses now owned by Google, thinks that AGI will arrive circa 2028 …

 

The Future of AI, Education, and Work, by Keynote Matthew Griffin

 

Speaking at the SoftBank World corporate conference, Son said he believes AGI will be ten times more intelligent than the sum total of all human intelligence. He noted the rapid progress in generative AI that he said has already exceeded human intelligence in certain areas.

“It is wrong to say that AI cannot be smarter than humans, as it is created by humans,” he said. “AI is now self learning, self training, and self inferencing, just like human beings.”

Son has spoken of the potential of AGI – typically using the term “Singularity” – to transform business and society for some years, but this is the first time he has given a timeline for its development.

 

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He also re-introduced the idea of “Artificial Super Intelligence” at the conference, which he claimed would be realized in 20 years and would surpass human intelligence by a factor of 10,000.

Son is known for several canny bets that have turned SoftBank into a tech investment giant as well as some bets that have spectacularly flopped.

He is also prone to making strident claims about the transformative impact of new technologies. His predictions about the mobile internet have been largely borne out while those about the Internet of Things have not.

Son called upon Japanese companies to “wake up” to the promise of AI, arguing they had increasingly fallen behind in the internet age and reiterated his belief in chip designer Arm as core to the “AI revolution.”

 

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Arm CEO Rene Haas, speaking at the conference via video, touted the energy efficiency of Arm’s designs, saying they would become increasingly sought after to power artificial intelligence.

Son also said he thinks he is the only person who believes AGI will come within a decade – even though he actually isn’t … and Haas said he thought it would come in his lifetime (which could still be within that 10 year window!). So, we’ll see.

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