An Tuesday morning, Robert Habeck senses the solution to one of his big problems. “May I ask something?” asks the Economics Minister in the conference room of the Heidelberg start-up Aleph Alpha, which offers software solutions with artificial intelligence. “If someone calls and says I read in the newspaper that you want to rip the heating out of my basement, but there is also a subsidy, my house was built in 1920, I am retired, if a heat pump works for me, then AI can do it Answer?” Not quite, Ramin Mirza from the management of the start-up has to disappoint the Green politician. Artificial intelligence can support processes. In the end, however, a person still has to make the decisions.
The appointment in Heidelberg is the fifth on Habeck’s summer trip this year, the first stage of which takes him from Stuttgart via the Rhine-Main area to Mönchengladbach. Out of Berlin: Habeck seems exhausted, but also relieved that he no longer has to negotiate, explain and appease the Ministry and the parliamentary group level on the Building Energy Act. In recent months, he was primarily the federal heating minister. He would now like to be Economics Minister again. But he can’t get rid of the heaters completely on the summer trip.