Elon Musk Shares His Views on AI, Neuralink, Autopilot, and the Blue Dot in a Podcast

In his second podcast with AI Podcaster Lex Fridman, Musk speaks openly about his views of AI.
Fabienne Lang
Elon Musk in Lex Fridman's interviewLex Fridman/YouTube

Elon Musk appeared on Lex Fridman's Artificial Intelligence podcast, and answered a number of interesting questions. 

The podcast centered around Artificial Intelligence (AI), one of Musk's company's, Neuralink, Tesla's autopilot system, and ended with Musk reading an excerpt from Carl Sagan's A Pale Blue Dot


What Musk had to say about AI

AI is a pressing matter these days, with technological advancements happening at the speed of light. Ok not quite, but you get the gist. 

Elon Musk and his many AI-driven companies hit our newspapers almost daily with news and updates. So does Musk think our future will have AI that will be able to outthink us in every way?

The answer is an unequivocal yes from Musk.

Musk stated that AI will be able to simulate consciousness, much in a similar way as us humans do. If you can't tell whether the voice on the other end of the phone is a computer or a human, then we might as well keep pushing AI forward.

He added that there's a lack of investment in AI safety, and a government agency should be overlooking everything that has to do with AI, according to Musk. For instance, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) watches over food and drug safety, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) watches over aviation safety, so there should be a similar entity for AI. 

What about Neuralink?

Will Musk's Neuralink help us understand more about the human brain? 

Musk believes that physically getting closer to the brain by using high-precision sensors that tell you what individual neurons are doing, and then being able to probe the neuron to see what the response is in the brain, will help us better understand our human brain. 

As the vast majority of our intelligence will be digital, so research on how our brains function is paramount. 

When talking about the future impact of Neuralink on the world, Musk stated that it will solve a lot of brain-related diseases. This, in turn, will help improve the quality of life of many individuals, and ultimately, help us stay on par with supercomputers that keep evolving.

As Musk said, "If you can't beat them, join them."

How about Tesla's autopilot feature?

Musk stated that Tesla's autonomous driving has already been deployed — and is safer than regular cars — on highways with its autopilot system. But in terms of Tesla's full autonomy, what is holding the electric vehicle maker back?