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CIA Engaged In "Infinite Race" With China For AI, Other Tech
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CIA Engaged In “Infinite Race” With China For AI, Other Tech

The CIA is engaged in an “infinite race” with China when it comes to AI and other top technologies, according to the agency’s Chief Technology Officer, Nand Mulchandani, who outlined a strategy that prioritizes technological prowess as crucial to national security.

Speaking at the Hill & Valley Forum’s gathering of top technology and government officials in Washington this week, Mulchandani’s made it clear that the agency is aggressively pursuing advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) to bolster both offensive and defensive capabilities, the Washington Times reports.

We’re looking at transforming every single part of what the agency does,” he stated, underscoring the depth of the CIA’s commitment to integrating AI into its core operations. The agency’s push includes the development of large language models, sophisticated algorithms that are the backbone of generative AI tools, aiming to enhance everything from field operations to analytical and support functions.

This strategic pivot comes as geopolitical rivalry with China is intensifying. The CCP has repeatedly expressed its ambition to dominate the AI sphere, which would present profound challenges and implications for global power dynamics. Mulchandani emphasized the need to rethink the concept of this competition as a “race,” suggesting that viewing it as having a definitive end is a misstep. “This is an infinite race. This is not going to stop. It’s going to keep on going,” he explained, framing the scenario as a continuous struggle for technological superiority.

The implications of this shift are profound. If the deployment of these new tools escalates to warfare, it will test America’s position in the technology stakes, a scenario Mulchandani hopes will never materialize. He predicts the next major conflict will be “primarily a software war,” driven by AI, changing the nature of warfare from hardware-dependent to software-driven.

The concerns are not just theoretical. At Stanford’s Hoover Institution, Herbert Lin of the Stanford Emerging Technology Review highlighted the shift in global tech leadership, with the U.S. losing its primacy in certain key areas like AI. Lin pointed out the critical need for a robust talent pipeline and a strategic vision, especially in fields like biotechnology, to maintain competitiveness.

Moreover, the CIA is particularly wary of AI-driven Ubiquitous Technical Surveillance (UTS), which threatens the secrecy of U.S. intelligence operations. In response, the agency is engaged in foundational infrastructure work, which Mulchandani described as the “sewer and plumbing work” necessary to navigate the AI revolution. This involves constant adaptation to rapid technological changes, ensuring that the CIA remains agile in its tech tactics.

“We talk about UTS, which is basically something that’s really, really killing us out in the field in terms of competitively, you know, biometrics, video cameras,” he said. “Well, how do we turn it around [and continue] those operations in the face of this much AI being thrown at us is another big area that they’re looking at. So directorate by directorate, we’re rethinking, reshaping every part of what CIA needs to do in the face of using it and deploying it.

The urgency of these initiatives is echoed in the broader governmental plea for collaboration from Silicon Valley. House Speaker Mike Johnson’s call to technologists and venture capitalists at the forum to guide and assist the government underscores the critical role of public-private partnerships in navigating the technological labyrinth.

As the U.S. and China continue their relentless pursuit of technological dominance, the narrative is clear: this is not a sprint with a finish line but a marathon without end, defining the future of global power, security, and technological innovation.

Big Mike Begs

No, not that Big Mike… House Speaker Mike Johnson (R?-LA), who implored the technologists and venture capitalists at the forum to help the government wherever they can.

Via @jacobhelberg

“There are not many industries, not many leaders and experts, who we just openly plead for your counsel, but I am doing that here today,” said Johnson. “Because a lot of the people who are of goodwill here, who want to do the right thing, could use some of your guidance along the way to make sure that we don’t step on any land mines that we don’t see. You have a much better vision, I think, on a lot of that than we do.”

Tyler Durden
Sat, 05/04/2024 – 22:45

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