Elon Musk: What did Demis Hassabis say about flawed Mars plan that silenced X boss?

Elon Musk and Demis Hassabis met in 2012 at a conference organised by PayPal founder Peter Thiel

By Web Desk
December 06, 2023
Elon Musk, Tesla CEO and Demis Hassabis, co-founder of Google DeepMind. — X/melville

Elon Musk is seldom made speechless, and it takes a genius to accomplish this tremendous accomplishment, — however, in one such occasion, Demis Hassabis, co-founder of Google DeepMind, highlighted a key problem in Musk's proposal to colonise Mars, leaving him perplexed.

If one looks into the history of OpenAI and AI in general, one will find some intriguing tales about how some of its largest co-founders got together. In one such instance, as initially reported by the New York Times, Google DeepMind co-founder Demis Hassabis pointed out a major weakness in Musk's Mars colonisation proposal during a talk that had Musk "speechless."

Hassabis and Musk met in 2012 at a conference organised by PayPal founder Peter Thiel, who was a joint investor in both SpaceX and DeepMind. Hassabis, who is experienced at persuading affluent individuals to fund his concept of artificial general intelligence (AGI), accompanied Musk on a tour of SpaceX's headquarters.

Hassabis presented a vital caveat during Musk's passionate description of his Mars colonisation idea as a solution to world overpopulation and other difficulties confronting our planet.

He noted that if AI surpassed human intelligence, it might theoretically accompany humans to Mars, or any other corner of the cosmos, and represent a threat there as well.

According to the account, Musk was caught aback and, according to the New York Times, was "speechless" by the discovery. Despite this, Musk ended up investing in DeepMind. Years later, however, Musk openly criticised the company, citing reservations about its AI capabilities.

While this discussion is famous for its funny feature of leaving Musk speechless for a few period, it also highlights a potential omission in Musk's Mars colonisation plans. The realisation that Earthbound concerns, including dangers from powerful AI, might exist on Mars underlines the complicated challenges and considerations involved with interplanetary colonisation.