Stephen Hawking Believes That A.I Could Be The "Worst Event In the History Of Our Civilisation"

Tell us how you really feel, Steve

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A man who spends his days locked in battle with science and humanity's greatest moral and theoretical challenges, Stephen Hawking has warned the world that Artificial Intelligence could end up being the "worst event in the history of our civilisation".

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Speaking at the Web Summit technology conference in Lisbon this week, the world's most famous physicist told the crowd that unless humanity can find a way to control its development, A.I is going to f*ck us all up.

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"Success in creating effective AI, could be the biggest event in the history of our civilisation. Or the worst. We just don't know. So we cannot know if we will be infinitely helped by AI, or ignored by it and side-lined, or conceivably destroyed by it," Hawking said during the speech.

"Unless we learn how to prepare for, and avoid, the potential risks, AI could be the worst event in the history of our civilisation. It brings dangers, like powerful autonomous weapons, or new ways for the few to oppress the many. It could bring great disruption to our economy."

While Hawking's opening remarks might make it seem like he's already invested in an underground bunker somewhere deep in New Mexico in preparation for our replicant-led apocalypse, he did end his talk with a slightly cheerier outlook on the future of tech.

"I am an optimist and I believe that we can create AI for the good of the world. That it can work in harmony with us. We simply need to be aware of the dangers, identify them, employ the best possible practice and management, and prepare for its consequences well in advance," Hawking said.

Just remember to be extra nice to Siri the next time you ask her something.