Elon Musk, Grimes and whatever their son is called have quickly become the internet’s new favourite family. This is the bizarre couple’s life.
Tesla founder Elon Musk and musician Grimes have welcomed their first child, X Æ A-12, into the world.
The event itself would have been subject to much discussion online even without the bizarre name of the couple’s son, which might not even be legal.
X Æ A-12’s parents and their relationship has been a source of fascination for netizens, uniting many fans and critics of both internet darlings.
This is especially clear on Twitter, the social media site where the couple first connected over a joke about artificial intelligence in April of 2018.
The joke that brought Musk, 48 and Grimes, 32, together related to an online thought experiment called Roko’s Basilisk, which posits that artificial intelligence pursuing human good will never stop because things could always be even marginally better.
The experiment considers whether artificial intelligence could pursue “human good” to the point where it does things like kill humans who didn’t help invent it.
The theory goes that a sufficiently powerful AI would be incentivised to torture or kill anyone who imagined the agent, but didn't work to bring the agent into existence.
It’s called Roko’s Basilisk because becoming aware of the theory requires becoming aware of the artificial agent theorised within, putting you at risk of eventually feeling its wrath.
The mythical Basilisk is a serpent king that can kill with a single glance.
Elon Musk was actually mentioned by name in the original, since-deleted forum post positing the theory, as someone who would be in the good graces of the artificial intelligence.
Perhaps the AI will have changed its mind a decade later, given Musk has recently been vocal about the need for regulation and restrictions on AI.
Regardless, in 2018 Elon Musk made a joke about Roko’s Basilisk theory and the similar sounding French architecture style Rococo.
But three years earlier, Claire Boucher, better known under her musician name Grimes, had beaten him to the punchline, with the creation of a character called Rococo Basilisk in the 2015 video for her songs Flesh Without Blood and Life In The Vivid Dream.
When the Met Gala rolled around, Musk revealed what helped him land his new girlfriend, after he slid into her DMs to share his appreciation of the joke.