Elon says AI will ‘do everything better than you,’ make employment obsolete

Elon Musk recently doubled down on his predictions that humans would need a “universal high income” in the wake of artificial intelligence (AI)-driven job displacement. — this time claiming that without our jobs, our purpose in life may eventually be to “give AI meaning.”

The bleak prognostication from the world’s richest person came during the VivaTech 2024 event in Paris as part of a winding speech wherein Musk made fervent claims that AI would provide all of our goods and services in the future.

“My biggest fear is AI,” the mogul said.

He also claimed that AI will be better than humans at everything, thus relegating our species to doing our best to support the machines:

“The question will really be one of meaning — if the computer and robots can do everything better than you, does your life have meaning? I do think there’s perhaps still a role for humans in this, in that we may give AI meaning.”

Musk, the father of at least 10 children, said humans might be able to work “as a hobby,” if they chose, but ultimately painted a bleak picture of the future where, according to his previous predictions, AI will supplant us in all endeavors.

In related news, Musk’s AI company, dubbed simply xAI, has reportedly secured $6 billion in funding from Lightspeed Venture Partners, Andreessen Horowitz, Sequoia Capital and Tribe Capital at a total valuation of $18 billion.

As Cointelegraph recently reported, Musk says that xAI lags behind industry leaders OpenAI and DeepMind but could catch up by the end of 2024:

“xAI is a new company so it still has a lot of catching up to do before it has an AI that is competitive with Google Deepmind and OpenAI. Maybe towards the end of the year, we will have that.”

This sentiment, combined with his prediction that AI will surpass humans by 2025, indicates that he believes his company will be among those that could potentially create AI capable of human-level cognition.

It bears mentioning that Musk’s AI-related predictions haven’t always fared so well. In 2019, he famously promised that Tesla would field 1 million fully autonomous robotaxis on the road by 2020. More recently, he claimed that Tesla would unveil its first robotaxi in August 2024.

Related: Artificial general intelligence still more than 10 years away — Baidu CEO

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