Mankind’s days are numbered, and AI is the reason, according to Stephen Hawking


The days of mankind’s dominance on planet Earth are numbered, according to eminent physicist Stephen Hawking.

The 75-year-old genius has warned, and not for the first time, that AI’s evolution has passed the ‘point of no return’, and that it’s only a matter of time before someone invents an AI entity with self-replication ability.

When such time comes, our very survival will be in serious jeopardy.

In a recent interview for Wired, Hawking said “I fear that A.I. may replace humans altogether,”

“If people design computer viruses, someone will design A.I. that improves and replicates itself. This will be a new form of life that outperforms humans.”

If we are to avoid such grim fate, we should look towards space, Hawking added. The terraforming and colonization of other planets may be our only chance to prevail.

Hawking is not the only one to issue stark warnings about the rise of AI. SpaceX’s founder Elon Musk recently said that it (AI) ‘poses a fundamental risk to the existence of human civilization.’

Entrepreneur Elon Musk announces plans to send manned flights to Mars by 2024


Billionaire entrepreneur and SpaceX owner Elon Musk has today announced his ambitious plans to put humans on Mars by 2024.

The plans call for two cargo craft to be dispatched to the Red Planet by 2022. These ships would ferry power units, mining rigs, and life support systems to be used by Mars pioneers arriving later in manned flights.

Musk’s visionary plan involves the development and construction of a brand new rocket, dubbed the BFR. Officially, BFR stands for Big Falcon Rocket, though SpaceX staff knows it by a more colourful name.

The BFR craft would carry one hundred passengers accomodated across 40 private cabins all the way to Mars. Ideally, the BFR would be a reusable craft, to reduce costs.

Thus Musk spoke at the International Astronautical Congress in Australia, though his words, while brave and inspirational, must perhaps be taken with a certain degree of skepticism.

SpaceX’s track record is peppered with both great successes and well publicized failures, and Musk himself is known for issuing ambitious deadlines that have come and gone without delivering on their intentions.

Nevertheless, the race to the Red Planet is well and truly underway.

Speaking at the same event was a representative from Lockheed Martin, who said that the company is working on a ‘Mars Base Camp’, a sort of mini space colony being developed for NASA. The components for the camp may be developed in the new Deep Space Gateway, the brand new spaceport intended to be put into the Moon’s orbit in the near future.

Come fly with me, to the Moon! SpaceX will fly two daring tourists around Earth’s satellite in 2018


While most Irish people are just happy to pop down to Lanzarote or Santa Ponsa for the summer, others have their sights set much higher than that in the holiday sweepstakes.

SpaceX, the company owned by entrepeneur Elon Musk, have confirmed that they will fly two tourists around the Moon in 2018.

The two pioneers -who have reportedly paid a handsome deposit for the privilege- will be flown around the Moon but will not actually land.

The week-long holiday is not without its risks, however. At least, the aforementioned Lanzarote and Santa Ponsa are tried and tested summer haunts. Outer space is another kettle of fish altogether.

SpaceX will use an as-of-yet untested Heavy Falcon-class rocket to propel an also untested craft, dubbed Crew Dragon. The company will test the rocket for the first time this summer.

SpaceX have achieved great accolades thus far, but have also suffered serious setbacks. A Falcon 9-class rocket exploded while being fueled last September, for instance, destroying over $200m worth of equipment and months of development in the process.

The tourists, whose deposits are presumably non-refundable, are said to have been briefed on the risks that the trip carries.

While no dates have yet been fixed for this historic event, SpaceX expects to kickstart the Moon tourism business next year.

Any volunteers?

Destination Mars: Billionaire entrepeneur Elon Musk unveils his plans to colonize the Red Planet, but admits there’s a very high chance the first colonists will die fast


Every great cause requires a few martyrs, they say. And no matter how one looks at it, the colonization of Mars is indeed a great cause.

Fourth rock from the Sun, and second smallest planet in the Solar System, Mars remains as hostile and inhospitable to human life as the bottom of the Atlantic. Featuring low gravity, an almost total lack of protection against solar radiation, and an unbreathable atmosphere consisting mostly of carbon dioxide, life on the Mars we know would be brief indeed.

Much has been written and postulated about whether or not the Red Planet will ever play host to human life. Even if mankind does set foot on the planet’s reddish and unforgiving surface, the challenges ahead would be great, and deadly.

Enter billionaire entrepeneur Elon Musk. Speaking at the 67th International Astronautical Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico, on Tuesday, Musk unveiled ambitious plans to not only ferry people to Mars, but actually colonise the planet.

Mr. Musk said he will strive to establish the first human settlement on Mars by the year 2022. Through his company, SpaceX, the entrepeneur plans to build a massive 400ft-tall booster rocket dubbed ‘Interplanetary Transport System’ (ITS), upon which would sit a spaceship transporting the wayward passengers. Propelled by rocket fuel made out of a mix of methane and oxygen, Lusk estimates that the flight time would be about 80 days. And you could go on the ‘cheap’, too. Lusk predicts he could eventually cut the cost of an average one-way ticket down to about $100k per person.

He did speak frankly about the unlikely survival of the first pioneers, however.

He said “I think the first journey to Mars is going to be very dangerous. It’d basically be, ‘Are you prepared to die?’”

‘If you are, OK, you’re a candidate for going. This is less about who goes first. … It’s about making a self-sustainable civilisation on Mars as fast as possible.”