Comics about mathematics, science, and the student life.

Existential Risk

First panel. Person One: "I'm developing an app to make people take existential risks seriously." Person Two: "That's great, but how are you going to do that?" (A device beeps) Second panel. P1 with their phone out: "See this counter? It shows the number of people who are currently awake and have the power to destroy the world. Right now, it's only at four, but I've seen it much higher." Third panel. P2: "For real? That's nuts!" P1: "And there's another one. Do you want the beta build? I'm testing a feature in which the app sends you more and more dire end-of-the-world quotes when certain thresholds are crossed." Fourth panel. P2: "I think I'm going to have trouble sleeping from now on." P1: "Don't worry, my machine-learning algorithm is predicting that things will get worse."

“Oh yeah, and that’s a good thing you won’t be able to sleep. That’s what I call ‘taking it seriously’!”

Disclaimer: I do not know what kind of values for such an app would be typical, but I think any number other than zero is a little terrifying.