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Primarily people come to this on the discord, so I just have this on lw for visibility


Hey people! Sorry, due to uber related issues going to be a few minutes late. Shouldn't be more than 10 though.


So this all makes sense and I appreciate you all writing it!  Just a couple notes:

(1) I think it makes sense to put a sum of money into hedging against disaster e.g. with either short term treasuries, commodities, or gold.  Futures in which AGI is delayed by a big war or similar disaster are futures where your tech investments will perform poorly (and depending on your p(doom) + views on anthropics, they are disproportionately futures you can expect to experience as a living human).

(2)  I would caution against either shorting or investing in cryptocurrency as a long-term AI play; as patio11 in his Bits About Money has discussed (most recently in A review of Number Go Up, on crypto shenanigans (bitsaboutmoney.com) ), cryptocurrency is absolutely rife with market manipulation and other skullduggery; shorting it can therefore easily result in losing your shirt even in a situation where cryptocurrencies otherwise ought to be cratering.


Worth considering that humans are basically just fleshy robots, and we do our own basic maintenance and reproduction tasks just fine.  If you had a sufficiently intelligent AI, it would be able to:

(1) persuade humans to make itself a general robot chassis which can do complex manipulation tasks, such as Google's experiments with SayCan

(2) use instances of itself that control that chassis to perform its own maintenance and power generation functions

(2.1) use instances of itself to build a factory, also controlled by itself, to build further instances of the robot as necessary.

(3) kill all humans once it can do without them.

I will also point out that humans' dependence on plants and animals has resulted in the vast majority of animals on earth being livestock, which isn't exactly "good end".


This seems doubtful to me; if Yan truly believed that AI was an imminent extinction risk, or even thought it was credible, what would Yann be hoping to do or gain by ridiculing people who are similarly worried?


Hey, I really appreciated this series, particularly in that it introduced me to the fact that leveraged etfs (1) exist and (2) can function well as a fixed proportion of overall holdings over long periods.

Is the lesswrong investing seminar still around/open to new participants, by any chance? I've been doing lots of research on this topic (though more for long-term than short-term strategies) and am curious about how deep the unconventional investing rabbit hole goes.


It's a beautiful dream, but I dunno, man.  Have you ever seen Timnit engage charitably and in-good-faith with anyone she's ever disagreed publicly with?

And absent such charity and good faith, what good could come of any interaction whatsoever?


This is a tiny corner of the internet (Timnit Gebru and friends) and probably not worth engaging with, since they consider themselves diametrically opposed to techies/rationalists/etc and will not engage with them in good faith.  They are also probably a single-digit number of people, albeit a group really good at getting under techies' skin.


Re: blameless postmortems, i think the primary reason for blamelessness is because if you have blameful postmortems, they will rapidly transform (at least in perception) into punishments, and consequently will not often occur except when management is really cheesed off at someone. This was how the postmortem system ended up at Amazon while i was there.

Blameful postmortems also result in workers who are very motivated to hide issues they have caused, which is obviously unproductive.


Reasonable points, all! I agree that the conflation of legality and morality has warped the discourse around this; in particular the idea of Stable Diffusion and such regurgitating copyrighted imagery strikes me as a red herring, since the ability to do this is as old as the photocopier and legally quite well-understood.

It actually does seem to me, then, that style copying is a bigger problem than straightforward regurgitation, since new images in a style are the thing that you would ordinarily need to go to an artist for; but the biggest problem of all is that fundamentally all art styles are imperfect but pretty good substitutes in the market for all other art styles.

(Most popular of all the art styles-- to judge by a sampling of images online-- is hyperrealism, which is obviously a style that nobody can lay either legal OR moral claim to.)

So i think that if Stability tomorrow came out with a totally unimpeachable version of SD with no copyrighted data of any kind (but with a similarly high quality of output) we would have, essentially, the same set of problems for artists.

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