Citadel’s Ken Griffin says the AI ​​community is making a mistake by generating so much hype

Ken Griffin, Citadel, on CNBC’s Delivering Alpha, September 28, 2022.

Scott Mlyn | CNBC

Ken Griffin, Founder and CEO of Citadel, believes the hype surrounding artificial intelligence may be overdone at this early stage.

“I truly believe that the AI ​​community is making a terrible mistake by getting upset about the short-term impact of generative AI,” Griffin said Tuesday during an event for Citadel’s new intern class in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. “I think they’re actually doing everyone a huge disservice with the hype they’re generating.”

Griffin, 54, said the advanced technology will one day make a difference, but it’s still in its infancy. The billionaire investor believes the threat of AI wiping out a wave of skilled professionals is far from reality.

“If you listen to the CEOs of technology companies, millions of white-collar jobs will be wiped out,” Griffin said. “I say, ‘Not so fast.’ Some professions accept mistakes, but in finance you have to be really accurate. As a lawyer, you really have to be precise.”

AI dominated the headlines this year, sparking a spending spree on Wall Street that briefly pressured key enablers Nvidia over a trillion US dollars market capitalization. Capable of taking written input from users and generating a human-like response, the buzzy chatbot ChatGPT was an instant global phenomenon and went on to become the fastest growing software in history. Even legendary value investor Warren Buffett said he tried it and asked the chatbot to write a song in Spanish.

“Here’s the problem with big language models: they’re built on the past, everything we do is about the future,” Griffin said. “We are at the beginning of the journey of large language models. It will be really interesting to see where this journey takes us. It will have a real impact on the entire economy.”

A group called Center for AI Security recently issued a sensational warning stating that AI could pressure humanity’s existence.

Programmers are attacked?

One industry that could see significant impact from AI is programming and software development, Griffin said. Citadel is in the process of obtaining an enterprise-wide license to use OpenAI’s ChatGPT.

“Programming is going to be a big goal for generative AI,” Griffin said when asked by an intern about the impact of AI on his company. “You want to make sure that as a software engineer you are really close to the domain problems that need to be solved. Your career path will be determined by your ability to solve problems. The days of “I am.” “A good programmer” are becoming more numbered.”

Many of Citadel’s interns have a computer science background. The company’s internship program has become extremely competitive. A total of 69,000 students applied for around 300 positions this year. The acceptance rate is even below that of Harvard and MIT at less than 1%.

Griffin, who also learned to code at school, stressed that software engineering will continue to be part of the toolkit that helps him run his business, as this skill is critical to identifying and solving commercial problems.

The interns begin the 11-week program in Fort Lauderdale for Citadel and in Palm Beach for Citadel Securities this week. Citadel’s Ken Griffin says the AI ​​community is making a mistake by generating so much hype

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