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Recognized physicist Stephen Hawking took his last breath on Wednesday. He was 76 years old.
The man’s greatness has, thankfully, been immortalized on Reddit, where he took some time off to answer questions from the community.
During his last post in 2015, Hawking zoomed in on his thoughts about AI and how it might help, or hurt, humanity. His replies have made their rounds following his departure as they remind people of the bright star the world has lost.
When asked if AI might be able to outsmart humans, the scientist replied:
“It’s clearly possible for a something to acquire higher intelligence than its ancestors: we evolved to be smarter than our ape-like ancestors, and Einstein was smarter than his parents.”
“The line you ask about is where an AI becomes better than humans at AI design, so that it can recursively improve itself without human help.”
“If this happens, we may face an intelligence explosion that ultimately results in machines whose intelligence exceeds ours by more than ours exceeds that of snails.”
Users also delighted at Hawking’s wit, which undoubtedly matched his ingenuity. Answering a query about a mystery he found “most intriguing,” he commented, “Women. My PA reminds me that although I have a PhD in physics, women should remain a mystery.”
You can read all his answers on the full thread.