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I have nothing against having fun. But there is a moral difference between having fun playing video games, and having fun spending the (money equivalent of 100 saved lives) to climb Everest.

How do you define greatness? Would climbing something that no one else has ever climbed before, despite being attempted multiple times by professionals, fall under your definition?

Not sure if there is any greatness in climbing rocks at all. 

Compare: finishing an unusually large pizza. It is dangerous, no one ever ate such a large pizza before, there is a lot of joy in eating a good pizza, and maybe your name will be mentioned in Wikipedia. But the feat is so pointless and banal, there is not greatness in it at all. 

I find your "still decide to waste resources" argument poor. Where does the logic end? Should people have zero fun and live like beggars just to donate every last cent to fighting malaria? Why are you commenting on LessWrong when you could be out doing something altruistic?

Fair enough. I myself not sure where it should end. But some things are clear indicators of not caring enough for fellow humans. For example, installing a toilet made of pure gold, or spending 20k for being the 5000th person to climb Everest. 

You're right, science fiction and reading for pleasure clearly have the developmental benefits.  

I myself was an avid consumer of science fiction, but most of it was junk, especially the Hollywood sci-fi. A much more carefully selected diet of fiction would've greatly benefited my development.  

It's so much easier to design a nutritious fiction diet these days, thanks to:

  • rational fiction
  • post-cyberpunk science fiction
  • tools like TV Tropes that allow checking a work for harmful tropes beforehand

Putin has at least two children, and he seems to care about them. For example, he gave one of his daughters Katerina Tikhonova several high-profile positions. According to the same source, Katerina reportedly gave him a grandchild. 

Unless he is sure that his children will survive a nuclear apocalypse (which is unlikely), this could be a major factor for him.  

Our current understanding of physics (and of our future capabilities) is so limited, I assume that our predictions on how the universe will behave trillions years from now are worthless.

I think we can safely postpone the entire question to the times after we achieve a decent understanding of physics, after we became much smarter, and after we can allow ourselves to invest some thousands of years of deep thought on the topic.

Quite a read, thanks! 

But, at the risk of being the Captain Obvious, I must remind the readers that mountain climbing is stupid. At least until we have reliable mind uploading tech. Because, as the story illustrates, there is a very high risk of permadeath, and for no good reason. 

In many readers, even the tragic stories like this trigger the deeply rooted desire for adventure, the desire for bravely risking your life to achieve greatness. But:

  •  Mountaineering is a rather banal adventure. You're climbing a rock. It's not even the most interesting man-vs-nature adventure. 
  • These days, there is zero greatness in mountaineering. There is no greatness in being the 5001th man who climbed Everest, not to mention less important rocks. 
  • There are much more noble and altruistic ways to risk your life.

Compare: drinking gasoline to impress TikTok followers.

You're right, the comparison is on purpose. Let's assume that the cost of a new nuclear power plant is $1 bln. Why should one spend $1 bln on a nuclear plant instead of a solar / wind / storage factory?

In some situations, nuclear is likely the best option. E.g. settlements beyond the polar circle, or on Mars. Aside from that, I'm not sure if nuclear is a useful addition to the solar / wind / storage mix.

I don't have a strong opinion on the issue, and the topic is new to me. 

Answer by RomanSJul 03, 202281

Both CI and Alcor accept small data storage items (e.g. a DVD / BluRay). But you have to be a member. 

Kriorus can also do that, I think. 

I have a similar digital mind backup project. No reason to wait for the proper mind uploading if we can already do some data transfer today. And the collected data could also be hugely beneficial for cryonics.

I can also store your data indefensibly, if you agree to store mine. For example, 700 MB.

I agree with the sentiment, but would like to be careful with interpreting the average human scores for AI benchmarks. Such scores are obtained under time constrains. And maybe not all human raters were sufficiently motivated to do their best. The ratings for top humans are more likely to be representative of the general human ability to do the task. 

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