Interview with Singularity Institute Research Fellow Luke Muehlhauser

Related to: List of public drafts on LessWrong

I can't put it into words, but I feel like not having slaves and not allowing rape within marriage are both good things that are morally superior for reasons beyond simply "I believe this and people long-ago didn't".

The process whereby things like this occur are what I'd call "human moral development".

So we have a mysterious process that with some deviations has generally over time made values more like those that we have today. Looking back at the steps of change we get the feeling that... (read more)

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Why doesn't a parallel argument apply to material and scientific progress?

Presumably because it is possible to objectively assess the degree of material and scientific progress (whether they are good is another matter). We can tell that our current knowledge is better because we can say why it is better. If there were no no epistemological progress, LW would be in vain!

So presumably the argument that there is no moral progress hinges on morality being something that can't be objectively arrived at or verified. But examples of rational discussion of morali... (read more)

0MugaSofer7yIf historical civilizations agree with us about as much as contemporary ones. That said, there has no more been a constant upward slope than there has been such a slope in technology of equality, we are just unusual due to the enlightenment, I think. EDIT: I think you may be assuming that we perfectly understand what we want. If I persuade a racist all humans are people, have I changed his utility function?
0siodine7yWhat do you mean by 'value space' (any human values or desires?) and 'moral change' (generally desirable human values?)? Also, a godlike AI is like playing with infinities when inserted in your moral calculus; a godlike AI leading to horrible consequences per your morality doesn't show that your morality was fully flawed (maybe there was a tiny loophole no human would try or be capable of exploiting). And I think you discount the possibility that there are many moral solutions like there are many solutions to chess (this is especially important when noting the impact of culture on values).

Interview with Singularity Institute Research Fellow Luke Muehlhauser

by MichaelAnissimov 1 min read15th Sep 201167 comments


Yesterday I sat down with Lukeprog for a few hours and we produced this ten-page interview for the Singularity Institute blog. This interview contains information about the Singularity Institute's technical research program and recent staff changes that hasn't been announced anywhere else!  We hope you find it informative.