There’s a new exciting Reddit AMA: ask Stephen Hawking anything in his first Reddit experience. The process will, however, take longer than any other AMA ever hosted by the social media website. Starting today you are invited onto Reddit’s Science subreddit to post your questions.
The answers for the questions, however, will be posted with a delay of a few weeks, as the famed physicist will sift through the possibly thousands of messages that will be passed on to him. This is the very first time that a Reddit AMA takes this format, and it will be the longest ever, lasting from 8 AM, July 27th (today) up until Tuesday, the 4th of August.
What Hawking wants to talk about, although he can be, logically, asked anything, is the topic of artificial intelligence. The subjects is becoming increasingly critical in today’s world, as the science behind it is becoming more and more a reality. Stephen Hawking recently talked about the movie Transcendence in an article for The Independent. There, he said that the prospect of AI ruling over us should not be so readily dismissed as being simply science fiction.
Hawking gave examples of primitive AI mechanisms in Apple’s Siri, or Google Now and Microsoft’s Cortana as being proof that AI is becoming more and more present in our daily lives. He also gave examples of weapons being developed which will be able to decide for themselves upon their targets and shoot. Although the UN have strongly pushed for a ban on these weapons, it is yet to come.
To this extent, back in January, Hawking along with a team of several experts on science and technology have signed an open letter that talks about the benefits as well as about the dangers pertaining to an ever increasing presence of AI in the world.
Hawking envisions a dystopic future in which AI will be able to out-smart humans in about every domain: finance, research, weapons and even diplomacy. The long term problem of the spread of AI will cease to be who controls it, but if it is even possible to control.
This current AMA is part of a larger initiative by Nokia together with Wired to raise awareness of the dangers of AI and to assure that technology serves us in the right way. The project started with an AMA by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, credited as the inventor of the internet, or the World-Wide-Web.
So, what will you ask Stephen Hawking?
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