Veteran interviewer Larry King spoke to Stephen Hawking six years ago, where Hawking warned that humanity could be doomed through our own “greed and stupidity.” King spoke to Hawking again on Monday for Russia Today to see if there’s been any progress on the self-destruction front, to which Hawking kicked off by saying: “We have certainly not become less greedy or less stupid.”
The world’s best-known theoretical physicist went on to lay out what he felt were the biggest threats to our species’ longevity. He continued to stress the threat of pollution and overpopulation, saying: “The population has grown by half a billion since our last interview, with no end in sight. At this rate, it will be eleven billion by 2100. Air pollution has increased by 8 percent over the past five years. More than 80 percent of inhabitants in urban areas are exposed to unsafe levels of air pollution.”
Once again, Hawking also highlighted the ever increasing threat of – you guessed it – artificial intelligence and the rise of the machine.
“Artificial intelligence has the potential to evolve faster than the human race. Beneficially AI could co-exist with humans.” But he went on to warn: “Once machines reach the critical stage of being able to evolve themselves, we cannot predict whether their goals will be the same as ours.”
However, it wasn’t all doom and gloom. Hawking finished by saying what he thought was the most exciting and surprising scientific discovery of his lifetime. Check out a snippet of the interview below and watch the full interview on Russia Today.