Charles: AI’s as big a leap for us as fire
KING Charles has hailed artificial intelligence as ‘no less significant’ than the discovery of fire – but warned it would also bring ‘significant risks’.
Addressing the AI summit at Bletchley Park, he urged global leaders and tech chiefs to work together in keeping the technology ‘safe and secure’.
The monarch told the attendees it was their duty to protect livelihoods and secure democracy from harm.
Shortly before his address, Technology Secretary Michelle Donelan announced that the 28 countries attending – including the US and China – had come to a ‘historic’ world-first agreement, called the Bletchley Declaration, committing to ensuring AI was developed and deployed safely.
King Charles thanked those attending for laying the foundation to make AI a ‘force for good in this world’.
In the opening session of the summit, the King said international cooperation had been vital in the fight against climate change.
In footage recorded at Buckingham Palace before he left for Kenya, he said: ‘We must similarly address the risks presented by AI, with a sense of urgency, unity and collective strength.’ Setting out the potential benefits AI could bring, such as finding a cure for Alzheimer’s, he said: ‘We are witnessing one of the greatest technological leaps in the history of human endeavour.
‘The rapid rise of powerful artificial intelligence is considered by many of the greatest thinkers of our age to be no less significant – no less important – than the discovery of electricity, the splitting of the atom, the creation of the worldwide web, or even the harnessing of fire.’
He continued: ‘However, if we are to realise the untold benefits of AI, then we must work together on combating its significant risks too. AI continues to advance with ever-greater speed towards models that some predict could surpass human abilities – even human understanding.’