Mar 11, 2018

Elon Musk on what the first Mars colony will look like

Musk takes the stage. Photo: Diego Donamaria/Getty Images for SXSW

Elon Musk says the first human colony on Mars won't be an "escape hatch for rich people," but will instead be a place where a small group of people "for whom the excitement of the frontier exceeds the risk and danger" plants the seeds for a democratic, entrepreneurial society.

  • In the beginning it will have "the most elementary infrastructure. Just a base to create propellant, a power station, blast domes in which to grow crops, all the sort of fundamentals without which you could not survive."
  • And then, "There will be an explosion of entrepreneurial opportunity because Mars will need everything from iron foundries to pizza joints to nightclubs."
  • Musk also said Mars will probably be a direct democracy, with votes on every major issue, per CNN's Dylan Byers.

As for the timeline, Musk noted that the first ship that could potentially travel to Mars is now in production, and said he hopes it will be able to do short "up and down" flights early next year.

Artificial Intelligence

Musk again sounded the alarm on AI, saying regulating it is "the most important thing we could possibly do."

“Mark my words: AI is far more dangerous than nukes … I’m very close to the cutting edge of AI and it scares the hell out of me.”

"I'm not normally advocate of regulation and oversight. This is a very serious danger to public therefore there needs to be public body that has insight and oversight," he said.

Self-driving vehicles

“By the end of next year, self-driving will encompass essentially all modes of driving and be at least 100-200% safer than a person. We're talking maybe 18 months from now"

Go deeper

There are warning signs that Nevada could be Iowa all over again

Former Sen. Harry Reid (D) lines up to cast an early vote for the upcoming Nevada Democratic presidential caucus. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

The alarms are increasingly sounding over Nevada's Democratic caucus, which is just five days away.

Why it matters: Similar issues to the ones that plagued Iowa's caucus seem to be rearing their ugly heads, the WashPost reports.

China tries to contain coronavirus, as Apple warns of earnings impact

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's NHC; Note: China refers to mainland China and the Diamond Princess is the cruise ship offshore Yokohama, Japan. Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

As China pushes to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus — placing around 780 million people under travel restrictions, per CNN — the economic repercussions continue to be felt globally as companies like Apple warn of the impact from the lack of manufacturing and consumer demand in China.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 1,775 people and infected more than 70,000 others, mostly in mainland China. There are some signs that new cases are growing at a slower rate now, although the World Health Organization said Monday it's "too early to tell" if this will continue.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 4 hours ago - Health

Apple will miss quarterly earnings estimates due to coronavirus

Apple CEO Tim Cook

Apple issued a rare earnings warning on Monday, saying it would not meet quarterly revenue expectations due to the impact of the coronavirus, which will limit iPhone production and limit product demand in China.

Why it matters: Lots of companies rely on China for production, but unlike most U.S. tech companies, Apple also gets a significant chunk of its revenue from sales in China.