US expert gives reasons: China is unassailable in the competition for AI

Artificial intelligence is considered to be the defining universal technology of the 21st century. The industrialized nations are vying for development, but the US sees the race as lost because China is ignoring ethical standards.

The US has already lost the fight for supremacy in artificial intelligence (AI) to China, according to the former software chief of the Department of Defense. “In 15 to 20 years we will no longer have a competitive chance against China,” the Pentagon’s first chief software officer, Nicolas Chaillan, told the Financial Times. “It’s already a done deal, in my opinion it’s already over.” Chinese companies are obliged to work with their government and make “massive investments” in AI regardless of ethics.

Chaillan, who has resigned in protest at what he believes is too slow a pace of technological change in the US military, sees the United States at risk from this failure. China is about to dominate the future of the world and control everything from media coverage to geopolitics. The cyber defense in the USA, however, is still at “kindergarten level” in some government agencies.

The expert also criticized Google’s reluctance to work with the US Department of Defense in the field of AI. The extensive debates about AI ethics would also slow down his country. As the world’s second largest economy, according to Western intelligence agencies, China will master many of the most important new technologies in about ten years – in particular artificial intelligence, synthetic biology and genetics.

Artificial intelligence – which primarily includes self-learning and networked digital systems – is regarded as the defining universal technology of the 21st century. It is trusted to change the economy just as much as electricity or the internal combustion engine. In Germany, almost 70 percent of companies see AI as the most important future technology, according to a survey by the digital association Bitkom. Every fourth company wants to invest here.