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Elon Musk offers a dire warning about AI at SXSW

12 March 2018

Musk said that he is expecting the spacecraft's first "short up-and-down flights" by the first half of 2019.

The billionaire, renowned for setting wildly ambitious deadlines, said the threat of nuclear war made it vital to colonise the Red Planet. "Although sometimes, my timelines are a little, you know".

He also warned that a colony on Mars wouldn't be an "escape hatch for rich people", but rather a new frontier.

More pressing to Mr Musk, and the investors that enable him, might be the backlog of orders for the Model 3, Tesla's "affordable" new vehicle.

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Yesterday, SpaceX has published on its official YouTube channel a new video which is dramatically reviewing the history of the Falcon Heavy launch, the most powerful rocket that has ever been launched from Earth, at the moment.

Elon Musk is unquestionably the most interesting businessman in Silicon Valley - arguably the world - thanks to his nearly single-handed reignition of the space race.

The Musk's Tesla will fly in space at a maximum speed of 7 miles per second and will get at 250 miles away from the Earth. Musk said previous year that human landings on Mars could happen by 2024. He also speculated that "most likely, the form of government on Mars would be somewhat of a direct democracy", in which residents would vote directly on particular issues.

"Mars will need everything from iron foundries to pizza joints", he said. Echoing a previous interview with Y Combinator, Musk said figuring out AI is the single most important thing for humans. "Once we have it, we'll have a sort of point of proof, something that other countries and companies will go and do".

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The short film may have been a different angle for the Westworld team, but they showcased their ability to create an eclectic film portraying the time, effort and process of the Falcon Heavy launch as if we were involved ourselves - and let's face it, we wish we were.

"AI is far more risky than nukes", he said, dismissing the pushback from AI experts who suggested Mr Musk was more interested in controversy than studying the work.

Today's conversation ranged over all things Musk - from SpaceX and Tesla, to The Boring Company, Neuralink and the billionaire's concerns about artificial superintelligence.

Artist's rendering of United States astronaut planting a flag on Mars.

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Elon Musk offers a dire warning about AI at SXSW