In a wide-ranging interview at The Washington Post, Post executive editor Martin Baron asked Amazon chief executive Jeff Bezos about machine learning, Donald Trump, the decision to buy The Post, privacy and security in the modern age, the future of space travel and the tech CEO's style of leadership. (Washington Post Live)

Amazon president Jeff Bezos spoke at The Post’s 2016 Transformers live journalism event May 18 in Washington, D.C. Learn more here.

“I want to build the heavy-lifting infrastructure, which gets done slowly and at great expense, build the highway to lower Earth orbit — make the cost of access to space so low. That would be my job. Then the next generation of people will be able to use that heavy infrastructure that I put in place so there can be a huge dynamic entrepreneurial explosion in space. This planet, this Earth, is really extraordinary. We really want to protect this planet.

“It’s inevitable, in my opinion, that we will move all heavy industry and a large fraction of the population will choose to move into space colonies and throughout the solar system. This will happen over the next few hundred years.

“With all the heavy industry in space, you will have better access to resources. You have better access to energy. We will make, for example, our computer chips in space with these gigantic factories that are environmentally unfriendly. Just send the little chips down to Earth where we can use them. Then Earth will eventually be zoned, residential and light industrial, so we’ll just have universities and housing and parks and waterfalls.

“My friends who say they want to move to Mars one day, I say: Why don’t you go live in Antarctica first for three years and then see what you think. If you want to do Mars, think about it. There are no waterfalls, no nature of any kind that you’re accustomed to. No blue skies. No getting in a sailboat. No friends or family. No restaurants. No universities. No bacon. No whiskey.”

Jeffrey P. Bezos
Owner of The Washington Post, founder and and chief executive of Amazon.com, and founder of Blue Origin

Washington Post executive editor Martin Baron interviewed Amazon.com chief executive and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos May 18 at Transformers, a live event by The Washington Post about pushing the boundaries of knowledge. (Washington Post Live)
"We know enough about the Solar System now to know that Earth is the best planet, Amazon.com chief executive and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos told Post executive editor Martin Baron May 18 at Transformers, a live event by The Post about pushing the boundaries of knowledge. (Washington Post Live)
Washington Post executive editor Martin Baron interviewed Amazon.com chief executive and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos May 18 at Transformers, a live event by The Washington Post about pushing the boundaries of knowledge. (Washington Post Live)
Washington Post executive editor Martin Baron interviewed Amazon.com chief executive and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos May 18 at Transformers, a live event by The Post about pushing the boundaries of knowledge. (Washington Post Live)

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