Stephen Hawking is participating in his first-ever reddit AMA. Unlike previous Q&As hosted on the site, Hawking’s will be conducted in two parts. Today, you can submit questions here. Submissions will be selected from by Hawking, who aims to “answer as many of the questions... as possible over the coming weeks.” »
More than a thousand prominent thinkers and leading AI and robotics researchers have signed an open letter calling for a ban on “offensive autonomous weapons beyond meaningful human control.”
What if you lived in a world where every kid got tested for potential depression when they were in elementary school? This video, from Binghamton University, describes new research on how we’d do it. »
In 1966, America was enraptured with the Space Race. Futurism crept into every corner of the culture—cars, movies, interior design. And also, as evidenced by this vintage footage, bridal fashion. »
The epic post-human story of Ramez Naam’s Nexus trilogy has finally come to an end—and the final volume, Apex, is coming out as an audiobook. And we’ve got an excerpt. Meet the intelligences that are set to replace us, and find out why “the next few minutes will decide the future of intelligence on planet Earth.” »
It’s nothing to get too excited or alarmed about, but a robot has passed a modified version of the classic King’s Wise Men Test. It’s another classic case of simulation rather than emulation, but the experiment shows how artificial self-awareness can be programmed into our technology. »
Family is a moving target. Our ideas about what constitutes a “normal” family have changed a lot since the 1960s, and there’s no reason to believe they’ll stop changing. How weird could things get? Here are nine different ideas about the future of the family. »
Like our brains, the human penis hasn’t evolved in tens of thousands of years — and that’s a real shame. Our favorite male body part is capable of so much more. In consideration of pending advances in science and technology, here’s what to expect with penis 2.0.
NASA just funded research into releasing robot-swarms during flybys, improving life support system, laser-mapping lunar lava caves, exploring the hydrocarbon seas of Titan, converting torpedo power supplies for deep space, creating an oasis of perpetual sunshine on the moon, and characterizing electric sails. Awesome. »
We all want to be our best selves. But what if you could add almost anything to your body and mind? A camera here, an exoskeleton there. This is the world that some biohackers imagine—one in which humans can extend their abilities beyond the limits biology has set for us. But what does that world look like? »
Given the vastness of space, it may only be a matter of time before we make contact with intelligent extraterrestrials. But how might an alien civilization react to such a monumental meet-and-greet, and can we possibly know their intentions? Here’s what we might expect. »
A slew of articles are claiming that an “exasperated” artificial intelligence snapped at its programmer during a conversation about morality and ethics. Sadly, it’s another example of the media overselling the capabilities of simple chatbots.
Set in the near future, Ghost Fleet dares to imagine what the next global war might actually look like. We talked to P.W. Singer to learn how he and his co-author August Cole managed to produce a futuristic techno-thriller that’s as plausible as it is entertaining. We were also given an exclusive excerpt from the… »
“As the 21st century unfolds, science fiction increasingly comes to seem like a realist rather than a speculative genre,” says one essay/book review in the L.A. Review of Books. It’s just one of a few great pieces up at the LARB site right now, about the choice of futures we face: Mad Max versus Star Trek. »
At some future juncture, we’re going to need more living space, whether it be found on another planet or through the expanse of our planet’s existing surface area. In his latest venture into worldbuilding, Oxford University research fellow Anders Sandberg explores some of the more extreme possibilities.
Wearable technologies like fitness trackers are becoming hugely popular, leading many to speculate about the potential for implantable technologies to augment human biology. The question that is often not asked however is: “How do we feel about living with technology on (or in) our bodies 24/7?” »
The day is coming when the U.S. Navy will be able to use its electromagnetic launch system to hurtle all manner of aircraft into the skies, but for now we’re content to watch this rather impressive demonstration of its awesome power. »
Researchers at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory have used a special algorithm to learn which characters in Game of Thrones are the easiest to remember according to visual cues alone.