Superhuman intelligence by the 2040s?

Many experts in Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) believe computers will become smarter than people within decades. Nearly half of respondents in one expert poll believe computers will be performing Nobel Prize-level research in the 2020s and “going beyond the human level to superhuman intelligence” by the 2040s:

The majority of the experts who participated in our study were optimistic about AGI coming fairly quickly, although a few were more pessimistic about the timing…

All three studies suggest that significant numbers of interested, informed individuals believe it is likely that AGI at the human level or beyond will occur around the middle of this century, and plausibly even sooner. Of course, this doesn’t prove anything about what the future actually holds — but it does show that, these days, the possibility of “human-level AGI just around the corner” is not a fringe belief. It’s something we all must take seriously.

We can’t even begin to fathom the implications. I’m sure our new superintelligent overlords will figure it out for us. I hope they’re benevolent.

Posted by James on Thursday, February 11, 2010