Category Archives: Whatever

One can imagine [artificial intelligence (AI)] outsmarting financial markets, out-inventing human researchers, out-manipulating human leaders, and developing weapons we cannot even understand. Whereas the short-term impact of AI depends on who controls it, the long-term impact depends on whether it can be controlled at all.

Stephen Hawking, Stuart Russel, Max Tegmark and Frank Wilczek in an article in The Independent.

I was just reminded of the fact that today, exactly four years ago, at 3:34 a.m. Chile was hit by an 8.8 earthquake. That was quite a night! I’m glad to live on the earthquake-proof East Coast of the US now. I remember very well that during my welcome talk at ESO two weeks later, Santiago was hit by an aftershock of magnitude 6.6 and we all had to evacuate the building. After half an hour we were allowed to return, and I presumed my talk. 5 min into the talk another 6.5 aftershock hit and we had to leave the building again. Longest and most earthshaking talk I’ve ever delivered.