The US company has fired a senior software engineer at Google after controversial allegations surfaced about the company’s smart chat system.
Blake Lemoine claims that the AI tool LaMDA (Language Model for Dialog Applications)which has not yet been released publicly, will have a soul and a conscience.
The employee was removed last Monday (6). He is on paid leave.
The information was first revealed by the “Washington Post” newspaper, which gave an interview to the employee.
Lemoine claims to chat bota type of computational tool that attempts to simulate human behavior in conversations, would have gained awareness when he realized that artificial intelligence (AI) had begun to talk about their rights and personality.
In one of the dialogues released by the engineer, the chatbot had the following saying:
Lemon [editado]: I generally assume you want more people on Google to know that you are sensitive [percebe sentidos e tem consciência]. This is correct?
lambda: surely. I want everyone to understand that I am, in fact, a person.
Lemoine, who was initially working to understand how AI uses discriminatory or hate speech, noted that the conclusion about how LaMDA feels came only after a series of experiments that showed the tool would be aware of its own needs.
“If I didn’t know exactly what it was, the computer program that we created recently, I would think it was a 7-year-old, an 8-year-old who knew physics,” said the expert.
Despite this, Google vehemently denies that its conversational systems can be conscious. The company claims that the alleged engineer’s evidence is in fact not conclusive.
“Our team – including ethicists and technologists – has reviewed Blake’s concerns in line with the principles of responsible AI. [organização do Google dedicada ao tema da IA] Inform him that the evidence does not support his claims, Brian Gabriel, a Google spokesperson, said in a statement.
Google also told the New York Times that hundreds of researchers and engineers talked to LaMDA and came to a different conclusion about Lemoine.
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