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Science & Technology

Hawking: 'mankind must venture into space'

By T.K. Randall
January 22, 2016 · Comment icon 41 comments

Mankind's future ultimately lies in finding a place to live among the stars. Image Credit: NASA
Professor Stephen Hawking has warned that we could face annihilation if we do not colonize other worlds.
The world-famous physicist maintains that, while the risk of the human race being wiped out by an apocalyptic event at any given moment might be low, over time such an outcome will become increasingly likely until it eventually reaches the point of inevitability.

To combat this, Hawking argues, mankind must be prepared to venture out in to space and to colonize other planets so that if the worst does happen our species will be able to live on.

"Although the chance of a disaster to planet Earth in a given year may be quite low, it adds up over time, and becomes a near certainty in the next thousand or ten thousand years," he said.
"By that time we should have spread out into space, and to other stars, so a disaster on Earth would not mean the end of the human race."

One of the biggest threats we face, Hawking believes, is the rise of artificial intelligence.

"Computers will overtake humans with AI at some point within the next 100 years," he said. "When that happens, we need to make sure the computers have goals aligned with ours."

Source: STGIST | Comments (41)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #32 Posted by Hugh 9 years ago
It's the people who "dream the SI-FI fantasies about a future" that we could reach that will be the ones who help us live on and expand out into the galaxy. There are answers to every challenge that we will face, we just have to use science to find them As far as protecting a space based solar plant, think of the tracking and defence systems available in a 100 years from now at our current rate of development. Look at the learning curve and see its movement into the future.
Comment icon #33 Posted by Shiloh17 9 years ago
They say time travel will be possible in the future and faster space travel. Mix the two.
Comment icon #34 Posted by gatekeeper32 9 years ago
Unless humans get their crap together here on earth I doubt it that the universe will allow us to spread out.
Comment icon #35 Posted by Bavarian Raven 9 years ago
Unless humans get their crap together here on earth I doubt it that the universe will allow us to spread out. Allow us? There's nothing to stop us except our own stupidity...
Comment icon #36 Posted by toast 9 years ago
They say time travel will be possible in the future and faster space travel. Mix the two. They?
Comment icon #37 Posted by Br Cornelius 9 years ago
Until physics is proven wrong, we are stuck on this planet/solar system for the forseeable future. Its time to grow up and stop indulging in fantasy magic bullet solutions (like space migration) and do what we know we can do. Br Cornelius
Comment icon #38 Posted by Bavarian Raven 9 years ago
Until physics is proven wrong, we are stuck on this planet/solar system for the forseeable future. Its time to grow up and stop indulging in fantasy magic bullet solutions (like space migration) and do what we know we can do. Br Cornelius It's thinking like this that'll doom us. Heck, if money was no object, i bet we could create a generation ship that could reach the nearest stars with a small crew and a lot of stored "genetic material" with current tech (and actually have a chance of succeeding). Again money being no object. But sadly it is an object. But to say we shouldn't even try is fool... [More]
Comment icon #39 Posted by socrates.junior 9 years ago
Mindset in the age of horse-drawn transportation: why even try to figure out something better? We can move this manure into piles like we've been doing all along. Mindset before electricity: candles provide light, why don't we focus on other things? This fantasy of currents and forces is nothing but sorcery! We should grow up! It's a proud tradition, Brother. Keep it up. (Also, because I can't resist correcting the soft targets, look up what speed particle acellerators accelerate to...a wee bit more than 0.001c).
Comment icon #40 Posted by Hugh 9 years ago
Until physics is proven wrong, we are stuck on this planet/solar system for the forseeable future. Its time to grow up and stop indulging in fantasy magic bullet solutions (like space migration) and do what we know we can do. Br Cornelius Physics is physics. It can't be "proven wrong", it can only be understood more as we advance in our understanding of it. Your continuous talk of things like "fantasy magic bullets" and "woo hoo magical thinking" is quite comical. Things that we take for granted in science today was not very long ago thought of as fantasy and magical. Now we understand physics... [More]
Comment icon #41 Posted by Br Cornelius 9 years ago
It's thinking like this that'll doom us. Heck, if money was no object, i bet we could create a generation ship that could reach the nearest stars with a small crew and a lot of stored "genetic material" with current tech (and actually have a chance of succeeding). Again money being no object. But sadly it is an object. But to say we shouldn't even try is foolhardy to say the least. We have no solutions to the innumerable problems such an endevour would pose. None. Its thinking like yours which is certain to doom us because you don't want to do anything about the real problems - preferring fant... [More]


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