back to article THE SCHMIDT HITS THE BAN: Keep your gloves off AI, military top brass

Alphabet exec chairman Eric Schmidt is worried that the future of the internet is going to be under threat once the world’s militaries get good at artificial intelligence. Speaking at the RSA security conference in San Francisco, Google's ultimate supremo said he is worried the internet will be balkanized if countries lock …

  1. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    Creepy Eric Schmidt said you should be afraid of large AI (which does not exist yet)

    Ignore the vast personal data harvesting machine behind the curtain.

    It is of no importance.

  2. Bucky 2

    IF countries lock down their borders? IF?

    Last time I checked, I couldn't view a missed Dr. Who episode because I don't live in Great Britain.

    Isn't that a locked-down border? It's already happened. At this point, we're talking more or less, not either/or.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      'couldn't view a missed Dr. Who episode because I don't live in Great Britain'

      Its ok for US tech corps to balkanise, just not users / peoples / governments / etc.. 'We don't need no stinking Unions' screwing up lucrative data-harvesting / restrictive streaming limits etc...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: IF countries lock down their borders? IF?

      The BBC locks out videos and older archives. Americans are second-class citizens online.

  3. Vector

    "machine-learning research needs to be out in the open under public scrutiny, not locked away in some secret military lab"


    Good luck with that.

  4. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Obvious double-speak is obvious

    The rhetoric about balkanization and all the rest is just wind. What the Head Google is worried about is his company's ability to slurp data the world over.

    As for balkanization, well guess what : language already does that fine. I can access all the Chinese websites I want at the moment, but I don't read Chinese so what good does it do me ? If I couldn't access all those sites, it wouldn't devastate my life. My wife was looking for a given product no later than yesterday, and she was all happy to have found a store selling it. Alas, the store was in Russian, no language choice. So she couldn't buy the thing because she had no idea where to click and what the conditions were.

    As far as I'm concerned, a bit of balkanization will do some good in that it will hobble the megacorps and their ever-extending reach, and I applaud that.

  5. SeanC4S

    The old deterministic spell checkers did a great job. The new neural net spell checkers are crazy.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "bad news for a global cloud giant like Google"

    ....."Google's ultimate supremo said he is worried the internet will be balkanized if countries lock down their borders to prevent citizens' personal information flowing into other nations. That would obviously be bad news for a global cloud giant like Google.".....

    Fuck US corporations and they're self-entitled pillaging of users privacy. I look forward to balkanization. An end to lawless Ad-slinging / data slurping and a fast shoot-out with the banditos of 'surveillance capitalism'...

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    'Ignore the vast personal data harvesting machine behind the curtain.'

    * - Is Schmidt the enemy? How about Zuk? These two are annihilating privacy uncontested. But its the self-righteous thinking of Schmidt / Zuk that's really disturbing. 'Privacy is dead' because we say it is... Therefore we're entitled to slurp whoever we want whenever we want!

    * - Look at the Zuk interview from the beeb today. Its all about 'Connecting the world'.... 'Connecting the world'... Like a demonic mantra, never acknowledging selling users out to advertisers or corrupt governments etc. Zuk basically blames populist plebs for screwing up his vision of globalisation.

    * - But when you're selling out your granny yet buying up houses and islands and evicting indigenous peoples to build a fortress around your own privacy... What's that called? How about having a dedicated team of 15 to manage your homepage? Is that sociopathic or psychopathic???

    * - The mainstream media paints these guys as visionaries. But imagine if either of these 'great leaders' ran their own middle eastern kingdoms or SE-Asian / Latam countries... How many North Koreas would we have???

    * - But hey stop! Most users don't care about any of this. They've nothing to hide. Privacy is overrated anyway like virginity. So get rid of it... Well, that's what's happening... So welcome to the new cult of surveillance capitalism.

    * - But it leaves whistleblowers, human rights activists and investigate journalists hung out to dry. Google / Facebook basically exposes anyone who helps root out corruption and keep the elite in check. The new UK / US laws confirm this! But in other places its a matter of life and death, and not just in the middle east, Latam has deadly corruption, so too does Asia.

    * - So its no longer about individual privacy anymore. When users care about privacy in the West, it in-turn helps to protect the more vulnerable in less fortunate territories.

    * - But hey all Schmidt thinks is: “If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place."

  8. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    "“If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it"

    And some people wonder why human beings call him creepy.

    Privacy <> legality.

    1. Potemkine Silver badge

      Re: “If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it"

      It probably means he's ok to have connected webcams everywhere in his house accessible by anyone.... doesn't it? ^^

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I love the Irony

    He seems to have forgotten that the internet which keeps his company in business was actually created by the US government for military purposes. Like it or not the military is a massive driver for technical advancement whether for good or bad and I'm pretty sure any advances in machine intelligence achieved by these self righteous silicon valley princes has already been matched or exceeded in the US DoD and intelligence agencies.

    Personally I think AI should be strictly controlled since its a far more dangerous tool in the long run than any weapon aside from nuclear missiles and I simply do not trust governments OR silicon valley to have anything other than their own interests at heart when developing it and it sickens me when they talk of it as inveitable. It isn't - it doesn't invent itself (yet!). They have to pay people to research it so pretending its unstoppable is mendacious self serving BS.

    1. SeanC4S

      Re: I love the Irony

      It is not stoppable. It has been proven to work. The hardware required is in place in mass. At the moment training a neural network is a slow business. Engineering improvements over the next few years will likely make the training algorithms much more efficient and smarter.

  10. SeanC4S

    That guy has the largest carbon footprint of any human ever. He spends all his free time making a nuisance of himself in a helicopter.

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