Democratic congressman reads AI-generated speech on House floor

BOSTON — When US Representative Jake Auchincloss decided to deliver a speech on a bill that would create an artificial intelligence hub between the US and Israel, he opted to let the AI ​​do the talking.

The short two-paragraph speech read by the Massachusetts Democrat on the floor of the US House on Wednesday was generated by the online AI chatbot ChatGPT. His staff said they believe this is the first time a speech written by AI has been read in Congress.

Auchincloss said he goaded the system in part to “write 100 words to deliver on the floor of the House of Representatives” on the legislation. Auchincloss said that he had to refine the message several times to produce the text that he finally read.

The bill, which Auchincloss is reintroducing, would establish a joint US-Israel AI Center in the United States to serve as a hub for AI research and development in the public, private, and educational sectors. .

Auchincloss said that part of the decision to read a text generated by ChatGPT was to help fuel the debate about AI and the challenges and opportunities it creates. He said he doesn’t want to see a repeat of the advent of social media, which started small and skyrocketed faster than Congress could react.

“I am the youngest parent in the Democratic caucus, AI will be a part of my life and it could be a general purpose technology for my children,” said Auchincloss, 34.

The launch of ChatGPT and other AI programs available on the Internet already presents a challenge for teachers who now have to deal with the possibility of students submitting AI-generated essays.

Researchers are also concerned that AI chatbots could help fuel efforts to spread misinformation and propaganda.

OpenAI, the non-profit organization that created ChatGPT, has acknowledged on its website that ChatGPT “may occasionally produce incorrect answers” and that its answers will sometimes be misleading as a result of how it learns. Recommend users to check whether the answers are accurate or not,

Text generated from Auchincloss’s cue includes sentences such as: “We must work with international partners like the Israeli government to ensure that the United States maintains a leadership role in AI research and development and responsibly explores the many possibilities provided by evolving technologies.

“There were probably about a dozen of my colleagues on the floor. I bet none of them knew it was written by a computer,” she said.

Lawmakers and others shouldn’t be reflexively hostile to new technology, but they also shouldn’t wait too long before writing policies or new laws to help regulate it, Auchincloss said.

In particular, he argued that the country needs a “public counterbalance” to big tech companies that would help ensure that smaller developers and universities have access to the same cloud computing, cutting-edge algorithms, and raw data as the companies. bigger.

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