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Answer by BuckyNov 28, 20232-2
  1. Someone in your company gets fired by a boss you don't know/particularly like without giving any reason
  2. You are mad with the boss and want the decision overturned
  3. You have a credible, attractive BATNA (the Microsoft offer)

These 3 items seem like they would be sufficient to cause something like the Open Letter to happen.

In most cases number 3 is not present which I think is why we don't see things like this happen more often in more organisations.

None of this requires Sam to be hugely likeable or a particularly savvy political operator, just that people generally like him. People seem to suggest he was one or both so this just makes the letter more likely.

I'm sure this doesn't explain it all in OpenAI's case - some/many employees would also have been worried about AI safety which complicates the decision - but I suspect it is the underlying story.

I work in equipment manufacturing for construction so can comment on excavators. Other construction equipment (loaders, dumpers) have a similar story although excavators have more gently duty cycles and require smaller batteries so make sense to electrify first. Diesel-Hydraulic Excavators are also less efficient giving more potential advantage for electric equipment.

  1. Agree that payback period is relatively low but possibly a bit longer than here - I’ve seen 3-5 years. The ruggedised batteries required for instance can be expensive.

Purchasers of new machines will generally keep them for 5-7 years which is enough to justify the payback but not to make it an obvious easy win.

  1. If you have to use a diesel generator you immediately lose a lot of your cost saving. It is surprising how many construction sites lack mains electricity.

  2. Many machines go to the rental market. In this case the equipment buyers do not get the benefit of the reduced operating costs. In that case the rental company has to sell the increased rental cost to their customers who are happy with what they are currently using.

  3. Total cost of ownership just isn’t the main driver of buyer decisions. This is already a problem with diesel-hydraulic machines - there are many ways to make these more efficient which would have a decent payback period but don’t get implemented because efficiency isn’t a key purchasing driver.

What buyers really need is performance and reliability (plus low up front cost). The advantage of electric is more difficult to sell for reliability because of a lack of track record so going electric is a risk. Users are also rightly concerned that battery range will not be sufficient on high usage days - batteries in current machines often claim a full day but not necessarily with high usage.

  1. Most likely route for electric in short term is for them to get used in environments where emissions are important (due to regulations or low ventilation such as mines) plus companies wanting to be/look green. This will allow a track record to build up which will give more confidence to buyers.

I suspect the most useful thing a government could do (assuming carbon tax is politically infeasible) would be to legislate for low emissions in cities which would build the track record faster.

Something similar not involving AIs is where chess grandmasters do rating climbs with handicaps. one I know of was Aman Hambleton managing to reach 2100 Elo on when he deliberately sacrificed his Queen for a pawn on the third/fourth move of every game.

He had to complicate positions, defend strongly, refuse to trade and rely on time pressure to win.

The games weren’t quite the same as Queen odds as he got a pawn for the Queen and usually displaced the opponent’s king to f3/f6 and prevented castling but still gives an idea that probably most amateurs couldn’t beat a grandmaster at Queen odds even if they can beat stockfish. Longer time controls would also help the amateur so maybe in 15 minute games an 1800 could beat Aman up a Queen.

Think you need to update this line too?

This is a bit less than half the rate for the CTA.

Is there a default direction to twist for the butt bump? The pictures all show the greeters facing in the same direction so one must have turned left and the other right! How do I know which way I should twist?

I cannot sign the assurance contract until I understand this fundamental question

Agreed, intended to distinguish between the weak claim “you should stop pushing the bus” and the stronger “there’s no game theoretic angle which encourages you to keep pushing”.

So there's no game theoretic angle, you can just make the decision alone, to stop pushing the frigging bus.

I don’t think this holds if you allow for p(doom) < 1. For a typical AI researcher with p(doom) ~ 0.1 and easy replacement, striking is plausibly an altruistic act and should be applauded as such.

I haven’t tested extensively but first impression is that this is indeed the case. Would be interesting to see if Sydney is similar but I think there’s a limit on number of messages per conversation or something?

When you did this do you let ChatGPT play both sides or were you playing one side? I think it is much better if it gets to play both sides.

I tried this with chatGPT to see just how big the difference was.

ChatGPT is pretty terrible at FEN in both games (Zack and Erik). In Erik’s game it insisted on giving me a position after 13 moves even though 25 moves had happened. When I pointed this out it told me that because there were no captures or pawn moves between moves 13 and 25 the FEN stayed the same…

However it is able to give sensible continuations of >20 ply to checkmate for both positions provided you instruct it not to give commentary and to only provide the moves. The second you allow it to comment on moves it spouts nonsense and starts making illegal moves. I also sometimes had to point out that it was black to play.

In Zack’s game ChatGPT has black set a trap for white (14… Ne5) and has white fall into it (15. Qxd4). After this 15… Nf3+ wins the Queen with a discovered attack from the bishop on g7.

Example continuation:

14... Ne5 15. Qxd4 Nf3+ 16. gxf3 Bxd4 17. Nxd4 Qxd4 18. Be3 Qxb2 19. Rec1 Bh3 20. Rab1 Qf6 21. Bd1 Rfc8 22. Rxc8+ Rxc8 23. Rxb7 Qa1 24. Bxa7 Qxd1#

One other continuation it gave got to checkmate on move 51 without any illegal moves or obvious blunders! (Other than whites initial blunder to fall into the trap)

In Erik’s game ChatGPT manages to play 29 ply of near perfect game for both players:

25... d5 26. g5 d4 27. cxd4 exd4 28. Qd2 Bb3+ 29. Ke1 Nd7 30. Nf5 Ne5 31. Be2 d3 32. Bd1 Bxd1 33. Kxd1 Nxf3 34. Qc3 f6 35. Qc4+ Kh8 36. Qe6 Qa5 37. Kc1 Qc3+ 38. Kb1 Rb8+ 39. Ka2 Qb2#

Stockfish prefers 26… dxc4+ and later on keeps wanting Bc5 for black plus black takes slightly to complete the checkmate than optimal but overall this is very accurate for both players.

Might be worth playing a game against chatGPT while telling it not to give any commentary?

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