End-of-year updates for those interested:
- CFAR made a larger effort to track our programs' impact on existential risk over the last year; you can find a partial account of our findings on our blog. (Also, while some of the details of our tracking aren't currently published due to privacy concerns, let me know if there's some particular thing you want to know and maybe we can share it.)
- We're on the cusp of being able to maybe buy a permanent venue, which would dramatically reduce our per-workshop costs and would thereby substantially increase our ability to run free programs (which have historically been the cause of a substantial majority of our apparent impact on existential risk, despite being a smallish minority of our programs). There're some details in our fundraiser post, and some details on what we've been up to for the last year in our 2017 Retrospective.
I'd be glad to discuss anything CFAR-related with anyone interested. I continue to suspect that donations to CFAR are among the best ways to turn marginal donations into reducing the talent bottleneck within AI risk efforts (basically because our good done seems almost linear in the number of free-to-participants programs we can run (because those can target high-impact AI stuff), and because the number of free-to-participants programs we can run is more or less linear in donations within the range in which donations might plausibly take us, plus or minus a rather substantial blip depending on whether we can purchase a venue). I don't know a good way to measure or establish that as such, and I imagine many would disagree -- but I'd still welcome discussion, either here or at anna at rationality dot org.