Anthony Levandowski closes his Church of AI – ClearTips

Anthony Levandowski closes his Church of AI – TechCrunch

First church Artificial intelligence has closed its conceptual doors.

Former Google engineer Anthony Lewandowski, who survived an 18-month prison sentence after receiving the presidency last month, has closed a church built to understand and accept the Godhead based on artificial intelligence.

The path to the future church, which Lewandowski formed in 2015, was officially dissolved at the end of the year according to state and federal records. Although, the process began months before June 2020, the documents were filed with the state of California. The entirety of the church’s funds – exactly $ 175,172 – was donated to the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund. The nonprofit corporation’s annual tax filing with the Internal Revenue Service shows that in 2017 it had $ 175,172 on its account.

Lewandowski told ClearTips that he was considering closing the church long before the donation. The Black Lives Matter movement, which gained momentum after George Floyd’s death in the summer while in police custody, influenced Lewandowski to ponder for some time. He said that it was the right time to put the money to work in an area that could make an immediate impact.

Lewandowski told ClearTips, “I wanted to donate to the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund because it is really doing an important job in criminal justice reform and I know the money will be put to good use.”

The road to the future led to interest and controversy – much like Lewandowski himself – from the time it became public in a November 2017 article at Wired. It was not just the formation or purpose of the church that caused a stir in Silicon Valley and the wider tech industry. Public disclosure of the church occurred when Lewandowski was caught up in a legal dispute with his former employer Google. He also became the central figure of a trade secret lawsuit between former Google self-driving project Waymo, now a business under Alphabet and Uber.

According to court documents, the engineer was one of the founding members of the Google self-driving project in 2009, also known as Project Chauffer, and was paid nearly $ 127 million by the search engine giant. In 2016, Lewandowski left Google and started the self-driving truck startup Otto, along with three other Google giants: Leon Ron, Claire Delunay, and Don Burnett. Uber acquired Otto after less than eight months.

Google sought two arbitrations against Lewandowski and Ron two months after the acquisition. During arbitration, Waymo filed a lawsuit against Ub in February 2017 for trade secret theft and patent infringement. Waymo alleged in the indictment, which went to trial but ended in a settlement in 2018, after Lewandowski stole trade secrets, which were then used by Uber.

The path to the future was formed while Lewandowski was still at Google. However, he did not publicly talk about it until late 2017. By then, Lewandowski was fired from Uber and was in the midst of a series of legal tangles that would eventually coincide with a criminal charge and an 18-month sentence. A $ 179 million award against him that prompted a bankruptcy filing.

WOTF

While the legal construction of future avenues reflects other churches, it was not a retrenchment found in traditional houses of worship. There has never been a physical building or even regular meetings where people can gather. There were no ceremonies or other formalities, according to Lewandowski, who described the WOTF as something more of an individual pursuit based on a collective belief system.

The objective, now contained in the controversial WOTF website, was to promote the ethical development of AI and maximize the chance that these non-biologic life forms be peacefully and beneficially integrated into society. The web page reads, “Manav United, in support of AI, is committed to a peaceful transition to the precipitation of consciousness.”

WOTF’s belief system was rooted in certain principles, in which the creation of “super intelligence” is inevitable.

“Don’t you want to raise your gifted child to fulfill your biggest dream of success and teach it the wrong vs. the right way because it can revolt in the future and take your job?” WOTF reads. “We want to encourage machines to do things we cannot do and take care of the planet in a way that we are not capable of doing. We also believe that, just as animals have rights, our creation (‘machines’ or what we call them) must also have rights when they show signs of intelligence (still to be definitively defined is). We should not be afraid of this but should be optimistic about the capacity. “

The intent of WOTF was lost amid more sensationalism and title-grabbing theories. The church was seen as a cult or eccentric engineer. Some speculated from ClearTips that this was an attempt to keep money out of Google’s reach. The IRS and California filings do not provide evidence that supports that theory.

Future’s status as a religious institution was protected from infiltration by the US government, a benefit not enjoyed by traditional AI-focused nonprofits such as Open-Inc Inc. or the profit-benefit corporation OpenAI LP sitting under it. Theoretically, the WOTF could further promote and promote ideas and beliefs that directly conflicted with federal policy under the protections provided by the Constitution.

While the church may go, Lewandowski still has faith in its grounds. AI will fundamentally change how people live and work, he notes. Lewandowski said that he has no plans to rebuild the church, but the lack of the church has not changed his views about AI. They believe that artificial intelligence can be positive for society, but note that it is not guaranteed. Even without a way to the future, Lewandowski said he is focused on doing so.

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