Superintelligence — a form of artificial intelligence (AI) smarter than humans — could create an "immortal dictator," billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk warned.
In a documentary by American filmmaker Chris Paine, Musk said that the development of superintelligence by a company or other organization of people could result in a form of AI that governs the world.
"The least scary future I can think of is one where we have at least democratized AI because if one company or small group of people manages to develop godlike digital superintelligence, they could take over the world," Musk said.
"At least when there's an evil dictator, that human is going to die. But for an AI, there would be no death. It would live forever. And then you'd have an immortal dictator from which we can never escape."
The documentary by Paine examines a number of examples of AI, including autonomous weapons, Wall Street technology and algorithms driving fake news. It also draws from cultural examples of AI, such as the 1999 film "The Matrix" and 2016 film "Ex Machina."
Musk cited Google's DeepMind as an example of a company looking to develop superintelligence. In 2016, AlphaGo, a program developed by the company, beat champion Lee Se-dol at the board game Go. It was seen a major achievement in the development of AI, after IBM's Deep Blue computer defeated chess champion Garry Kasparov in 1997.