What is AI risk?
AI has been compared to electricity and the steam engine in terms of its potential to transform society. The technology could be profoundly beneficial, but it also presents serious risks. When AI becomes more advanced, it could eventually pose catastrophic or existential risks. A 'catastrophic risk' is a risk to human wellbeing on a global scale, while an 'existential risk' (X-Risk) is a more extreme risk that threatens the permanent curtailment of humanity's potential (Ord 2020). There are many ways in which AI systems could pose or contribute to these risks, some of which are enumerated below.
Speculative AI Hazards and Failure Modes
Adapted from X-Risk Analysis for AI Research