Tech moguls Elon Musk and Larry Page’s friendship fell apart over their differences over artificial intelligence, according to a new book that describes how Musk believed his former friend was too “gentlemanly” about the technology.
Walter Isaacson’s new book reports how Musk, the CEO of SpaceX, got into a heated debate with Page, then the CEO of Google, at Musk’s birthday party in 2013.
Musk is said to have argued that unless safeguards are put in place with artificial intelligence, systems may replace humans entirely. Page then backtracked and reportedly asked why it would matter if machines outsmarted humans.
Isaacson’s book sets out how Musk then referred to human consciousness as a precious flicker of light in the universe that should not be extinguished. Page is then said to have called Musk a “speciesist.”