How many times have we heard warnings and apocalyptic predictions from mystics and prophets, saying that our days on Earth are numbered?
While it’s a matter of your views and beliefs whether you believe them or not, a warning of this kind coming from a prominent scientist sounds much more convincing.
It’s not the first time when Professor Stephen Hawking warns about a coming end as he has always been quite pessimistic about the future of humankind. Actually, he is not the only one and there have been numerous warnings from the scientific community about the detrimental effects human activity has on the environment. Recently, he claimed that humanity has only 1000 years left on Earth and our kind is doomed unless we colonize other planets.
Hawking believes that the only thing that can save us from inevitable extinction is space colonization and migration to other planets, where we should start it all over again. While the famous physicist recognizes the challenges of starting a self-sustaining colony on another planet, he thinks that it’s the only way for us to survive and we should do our best to advance our technology to make it happen.
“By that time, we should have spread out into space, and to other stars, so a disaster on Earth would not mean the end of the human race,” Hawking said in a lecture for BBC Radio.
In 2015, Hawking together with Bill Gates, Elon Musk and more than 20,000 scientists called for a ban on autonomous weapons. They also suggested that it’s time to focus on the development of Artificial Intelligence that could potentially benefit our society and possibly achieve the levels of human capability.
Yet, this brings even more serious concerns and challenges for our own safety than the idea of space colonization across our solar system and beyond. If we begin to neglect the AI constraints, we basically open Pandora’s Box and enable the AI to reach the thought processes and capabilities of the human mind. No need to say what kind of complications it may potentially lead to. If the AI could gain more intelligence than we have, as well as more strength, this could result in unpredictable (and disastrous) consequences for the future of humanity.
Moreover, Professor Hawking believes that the AI is not the only threat to the human race. In his numerous statements, he always said that we are not the only living beings in the universe and should wary of the possibility of an encounter with a hostile alien species.
With all this selfish, greedy and irresponsible behavior of today’s humans, you don’t need to have a Stephen Hawking’s mind in order to see that we will probably destroy our home planet and ourselves one day. And the only way to prevent this gloomy future is to change our whole world view.