Legendary coder John Carmack is leaving Facebook's Oculus after 6 years to focus on a personal project – at least with the creation of Artificial General Intelligence, or "Strong AI." He will remain attached to the company in a "Consulting CTO" Position, but will spend all his working hours, perhaps, the AI eventually surpassing and destroying mankind.
AGI or powerful AI is the concept of an AI that learns more than what humans do, and as such is not limited to the very narrow machine learning algorithms we refer to as AI today. AGI is the science fiction version of AI – HAL 9000, Replicants, and of course the Terminator. There are some good ones, too ̵1; Data and R2D2, for example.
So far AGI has not been introduced in any serious way, let alone approaching researchers. It's an open question if such a thing is possible, and if it is, if we can do it – and if we can, if we should.
Carmack announced the move to Facebook, in which he explained that the uncertainty about such a fascinating and exciting topic was exactly what attracted him to it.
When I think of everything I've done throughout gaming, aerospace, and VR, I've always felt that I had at least one vague "line of sight" to come up with solutions, whether they were unconventional or not. combined. Sometimes I wondered how I could get into a problem where the solution was not visible. I decided I should try it before I grow old.
His plan was to pursue it from home, the "Victorian Gentleman Scientist", and help his son. It's like someone retiring early to devote their whole life to the perpetual motion machine they are almost working on … except Carmack could have had a chance to create something remarkable.
His is rarely a compilation of a technical mind combined with vision and creativity, leading him to skip the bleeding edge of technology and sometimes give it a serious push in some direction or another.
Unlike his work at Oculus, we couldn't buy the result of his expert touch, so let's just wait and see if anything comes out of it, if anything. I wish him good luck – but I also want him to be careful.