When Facebook directed two of these semi-intelligent bots to talk to each other, FastCo reported, the programmers realised they had made an error by not incentivising the chatbots to communicate according to human-comprehensible rules of the English language.
But in the latest code developed by Facebook, bots will be able to dialogue and "to engage in start-to-finish negotiations with other bots or people while arriving at common decisions or outcomes", they wrote. When Facebook noticed that its AI bots started speaking in different languages, this is exactly the kind of scenario that Musk was anxious about.
The conversation between the two robots took place in the context of an experiment carried out in June 2017 by researchers affiliated with Facebook. But they quickly broke down as the robots appeared to chant at each other in a language that they each understood but which appears mostly incomprehensible to humans.
The AI language emerged during a part of Facebook's research where the AI agents practiced their negotiation skills with each other.
Bob says: "i can i i everything else" followed by a series of full stops, to which Alice replies "balls have zero to me to me to me to me to me to me to me to me to". Thus, Facebook Artificial Intelligence Research (FAIR) embarked on a project that utilized reinforcement learning so that AI bots learn how to negotiate better from past experience.
Facebook was working on the development of an AI system, when it suddenly chose to shut it down. Alice: "Balls have zero to me to me to me to me to me to me to me to me to".
"Over time, the bots have become quite skilled at it and they even began gaining interest in one item in order to "sacrifice" it at a later stage in their negotiation as a faux compromise", it added. "It's important to remember, there aren't bilingual speakers of AI and human languages", FAIR's Dhruv Batra told Fast Code Design.
But the researchers also said it is impossible for humans to comprehend the AI language and translate it into English.
Who knows, perhaps Elon Musk's billion dollar crusade to stop the "AI apocalypse" isn't such a far-fetched idea after all.
Days after Tesla CEO Elon Musk said Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg's understanding of artificial intelligence (AI) was limited, the social media company has reportedly shut down one of its AI systems because "things got out of hand". "Like if I say "the" five times, you interpret that to mean I want five copies of this item".
Somehow, we doubt that use of language will catch on with humanity.