Dec 6, 2012
(The Singularity Institute maintains Less Wrong, with generous help from Trike Apps, and much of the core content is written by salaried SI staff members.)
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Now that Singularity University has acquired the Singularity Summit, and SI's interests in rationality training are being developed by the now-separate CFAR, the Singularity Institute is making a major transition. Most of the money from the Summit acquisition is being placed in a separate fund for a Friendly AI team, and therefore does not support our daily operations or other programs.
For 12 years we've largely focused on movement-building — through the Singularity Summit, Less Wrong, and other programs. This work was needed to build up a community of support for our mission and a pool of potential researchers for our unique interdisciplinary work.
Now, the time has come to say "Mission Accomplished Well Enough to Pivot to Research." Our community of supporters is now large enough that qualified researchers are available for us to hire, if we can afford to hire them. Having published 30+ research papers and dozens more original research articles on Less Wrong, we certainly haven't neglected research. But in 2013 we plan to pivot so that a much larger share of the funds we raise is spent on research.
In the coming months, we plan to do the following:
(Other projects are still being surveyed for likely cost and strategic impact.)
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† $115,000 of total matching funds has been provided by Edwin Evans, Mihaly Barasz, Rob Zahra, Alexei Andreev, Jeff Bone, Michael Blume, Guy Srinivasan, and Kevin Fischer.
I will mostly be traveling (for AGI-12) for the next 25 hours, but I will try to answer questions after that.