One of the more crucial points, I think, is that positive utility is – for most humans – complex and its creation is conjunctive. Disutility, in contrast, is disjunctive. Consequently, the probability of creating the former is smaller than the latter – all else being equal (of course, all else is not equal).

In other words, the scenarios leading towards the creation of (large amounts of) positive human value are conjunctive: to create a highly positive future, we have to eliminate (or at least substantially reduce) physical pain and boredom and injustice ... (read more)

Yeah, I also had the idea about utility being conjunctive and mentioned it in a deleted reply to Wei, but then realized that Eliezer's version (fragility of value) already exists and is better argued.

On the other hand, maybe the worst hellscapes can be prevented in one go, if we "just" solve the problem of consciousness and tell the AI what suffering means. We don't need all of human value for that. Hellscapes without suffering can also be pretty bad in terms of human value, but not quite as bad, I think. Of course solving consciousness is still ... (read more)

S-risks: Why they are the worst existential risks, and how to prevent them

by Kaj_Sotala 1 min read20th Jun 2017107 comments