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It took less than six hours for drug-developing AI to invent 40,000 potentially lethal molecules. Researchers put AI normally used to search for helpful drugs into a kind of “bad actor” mode to show how easily it could be abused at a biological arms control conference.
All the researchers had to do was tweak their methodology to seek out, rather than weed out toxicity. The AI came up with tens of thousands of new substances, some of which are similar to VX, the most potent nerve agent ever developed. Shaken, they published their findings this month in the journal Nature Machine Intelligence.
The paper had us at The Verge a little shook, too. So, to figure out how worried we should be, The Verge spoke with Fabio Urbina, lead author of the paper. He’s also a senior scientist at Collaborations Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a company that focuses on finding drug treatments for rare diseases.
According to the NYP , The AI was said to come up with possible chemical weapons similar to one of the most dangerous nerve agents of all time. That dangerous substance is called VX. VX is a tasteless and odorless nerve agent and even the smallest drop can cause a human to sweat and twitch.
A larger dose can cause convulsions and can even stop a person from breathing completely. The scientists were told to withhold the specific details on how they managed to turn good-acting AI into an evil version. Fabio Urbina, the lead author of the paper, told The Verge: “Broadly, the way it works for this experiment is that we have a lot of datasets historically of molecules that have been tested to see whether they’re toxic or not.”
“In particular, the one that we focus on here is VX. It is an inhibitor of what’s known as […]
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I hate being “that guy” who asks people to donate because I think our conservative news network is so crucial, but here I am…
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