Link to talk video and transcript.

Selected excerpts to follow:

the development of Artificial Intelligence, which happened no earlier than 1553 and no later than 1844.

I’m talking about the very old, very slow AIs we call corporations, of course.


In the late 18th century, Stewart Kyd, the author of the first treatise on corporate law in English, defined a corporation as:

a collection of many individuals united into one body, under a special denomination, having perpetual succession under an artificial form, and vested, by policy of the law, with the capacity of acting, in several respects, as an individual, particularly of taking and granting property, of contracting obligations, and of suing and being sued, of enjoying privileges and immunities in common, and of exercising a variety of political rights, more or less extensive, according to the design of its institution, or the powers conferred upon it, either at the time of its creation, or at any subsequent period of its existence.
—A Treatise on the Law of Corporations, Stewart Kyd (1793-1794)


Here’s the thing about corporations: they’re clearly artificial, but legally they’re people. They have goals, and operate in pursuit of these goals. And they have a natural life cycle. In the 1950s, a typical US corporation on the S&P 500 index had a lifespan of 60 years, but today it’s down to less than 20 years. […]

Each human is only retained so long as they can perform their assigned tasks, and can be replaced with another human, much as the cells in our own bodies are functionally interchangeable […]


We humans are living in a world shaped by the desires and needs of AIs, forced to live on their terms, and we are taught that we are valuable only insofar as we contribute to the rule of the machines.

This will probably come sooner:

The smart money says that by 2027 you won’t be able to believe anything you see in video unless there are cryptographic signatures on it, linking it back to the device that shot the raw feed …