Billionaire investor Warren Buffett expressed concern over the rise of artificial intelligence (AI), comparing its evolution to the creation of the atom bomb.
He and his partner, Charlie Munger, discussed their outlook on tech and AI during a wide-ranging discussion at Berkshire Hathaway’s annual meeting in Omaha, Nebraska.
Buffett, who said he learned about ChatGPT from his buddy Bill Gates, one of the founders of Microsoft, voiced his fears over the rapidly evolving programmes.
"When something can do all kinds of things, I get a little bit worried,” the 92-year-old investor said. “Because I know we won’t be able to un-invent it and, you know, we did invent, for very, very good reason, the atom bomb in World War II.
"It was enormously important that we did so," Buffett continued, "but is it good for the next 200 years of the world that the ability to do so has been unleashed?"
Buffett said he believes AI will change "everything in the world, except how men think and behave.
"And that’s a big step to take."
Munger, the 99-year-old vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, also expressed some reluctance about AI.
"I am personally sceptical of some of the hype that is going into artificial intelligence," Munger said. "I think old-fashioned intelligence works pretty well."
Their comments came after more than 1,600 researchers and tech experts, including Elon Musk, signed a letter in late March calling for a six-month pause on AI development because they claim it poses "profound risks to society and humanity".
"Powerful AI systems should be developed only once we are confident that their effects will be positive and their risks will be manageable," the letter said.