Milan Cvitkovic

Wiki Contributions


(How) should we pursue human longevity?

Really useful, thank you!  Although you seem to only disagree with two "root cause" errors haha - were there other errors included in "most of this"?

I read the posts you linked to.  I really like your homeostasis argument - I'll try to add it to my writeup soon.

If I understand you right, you're saying that:
     high degree of correlation between symptoms of aging (even when controlling for age) => one true independent root cause or shared intermediate

But I don't see why the situation can't be closer to a fully-connected graph of many causes, requiring intervention on many nodes.  (To be clear what I meant by "many causes," I'd consider 4+ to be many.)  That's closer to the model I have in my head.  What am I missing here?  

Also, do you have links for your last 3 bullet points? I'd love to follow up on those.

References that treat human values as units of selection?

Thanks, Charlie!

Modifying yourself to want bad things is wrong in the same sense that the bad things are wrong in the first place...

I definitely agree with this, and have even written about it previously. Maybe my problem is that I feel like "find the best values to pursue" is itself a human value, and then the right-or-wrong-value question becomes the what-values-win question.

References that treat human values as units of selection?

Thank you! Carl Shulman's post still seems written from the some-values-are-just-better-than-others perspective that's troubling me, but your 2009 comment is very relevant. (Despite future-you having issues with it.)

The question "which values, if any, we should try to preserve" you wrote in that comment is, I think, the crux of my issue. I'm having trouble thinking about it, and questions like it, given my "you can't talk about what's right, only what wins" assumption. I can (try to) think about whether a paperclip maximizer or The Culture is more likely to overrun the galaxy, but I don't know how say that one scenario is "better", except from the perspective of my own values.

Is value drift net-positive, net-negative, or neither?

I would argue that the concept of value drift (meaning "a change in human values from whatever they are currently") isn't really sensible to talk about. Here's a reductio argument to that effect: Avoiding bad value drift is as important as solving value alignment:

It's hard to compare values on their "goodness". I prefer to think of them as phenotypes and compare them on their adaptive benefits to agents that hold them. After all, it doesn't really matter what's right: it matters what wins.