Bioethics

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Key Takeaways

  • We offer welfare range estimates for 11 farmed species: pigs, chickens, carp, salmon, octopuses, shrimp, crayfish, crabs, bees, black soldier flies, and silkworms.
  • These estimates are, essentially, estimates of the differences in the possible intensities of these
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5MHR2d
Thanks Bob, that makes sense! Just to see the magnitude of the change, I tried rerunning the model with a neuron count estimate of 100 million for salmon. That led to salmon's 50th-percentile estimate increasing by 0.001 and  95th-percentile estimate increasing by 0.002. So you're right that it's not really a noticeable impact. 

TL;DR

I searched for other lists of biosecurity newsletters specifically and didn’t find one that suited my needs, so I made one! Please leave a comment with any other newsletters that I missed so that I can add...

1Emerson Spartz3d
Thank you!

Your microbiome is a bunch of microorganisms living in your gut and other epithelial places.  You have a symbiotic relation with this population.  You feed it.  It helps you digest.

Your microbiome population talks to you.  It creates...

1TeddyW15d
As it currently stands, the AI is dependent on us for everything.   We supply the power and we maintain the hardware and software.  I think you ask the wrong question. We are already indispensable to the AI.   The question should be how is it possible that we lose that?

Trigger warning: racism.

I personally found this letter incredibly difficult to read. Beyond the content of the email, the apology is also terribly written, and reads like Nick, an intellectual leader in EA and longtermism, might still hold...

6Mica White18d
I'm shocked by how much disagreement this has. This is the bare minimum if you ask me

Epistemic status: layperson’s attempt to understand the relevant literature. I welcome corrections from anyone with a better understanding of fish biology. 

Summary

  • Neuron counts have historically been used as a proxy for the moral weight of different animal species.
...
2khazna18d
Hi, thank you for this! I'm trying to recreate your estimated numbers but can't get the right results - are you measuring body weights in grams for the curve fit?  
1MHR18d
Yes I am. Here [https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/10dZ490s7FrR_-hIlTMwZycnGNczgNBOBmo_iqSyu5jU/edit?usp=sharing] is the link to my  sheet with the calculations. 

Summary: There is a growing trend among governments and investors to invest in not just civilizational progress, to increase wealth and wellbeing, but also in civilizational resilience, to stabilize them against economic or environmental shocks. This trend...

2FGH1mo
Thanks for your in-depth comment, Sanjay!  Maybe the most important point to clarify here is, I'm not arguing that for-profit investing is the best thing to do to increase civilizational resilience. It might be a good career option for some people but this will depend heavily on personal fit and other factors. I'm rather trying to test an argument that I envisage using with (not necessarily EA-familiar) VC investors for why civilizational resilience should be an explicit goal of for-profit investing. On your specific points * What I mean by "safety sells" is that there does seem to be some overlap of the actions one would take if merely trying to build a profitable business and the actions one would take if trying to increase civilizational resilience. For instance, obtaining non-dilutive government funding is good from a financial perspective and meeting the criteria for such government funding may be aligned with increasing civilizational resilience. The link is of course not nearly as strong (yet) as I would want from a long-termist EA perspective but in some cases, it is there - so the title is admittedly somewhat aspirational. I kept it anyway because it encapsulates what I would like VC investors to see: Civilizational Resilience is important and it can be (like sustainability) one of the goals your business can have that positively influence both financials and impact * I fully agree there may be interesting opportunities to increase civilizational resilience by building profitable businesses outside the bioeconomy. My personal subject matter expertise is in biotech and I had limited time, hence the focus - I'm excited to see people started looking into PPE and indoor air monitoring/cleaning, for instance! * On whether there may be opportunities for for-profit investing into civilizational resilience in cause areas outside food security and biosecurity - I hope so but I'm uncertain. It may be worth look
2Sanjay1mo
This all makes sense, thank you :-)

What role do you think bioethics and bioethicists have on biosecurity and AI regulation? I've been thinking a lot about how represented bioethics should be in the two fields and if advocating for their increased involvement would help reduce x-risks. Thoughts?

A power-seeking malicious AI could use lab workers to create dangerous viruses. It could blackmail the lab workers or threaten them in some way. This is a weak point for AI safety in my view. AI could figure out how to create diseases or dangerous compounds.  

Last week I donated a kidney as an altruistic donor through the UK Living Kidney Sharing Scheme (UKLKSS). This post will cover the landscape of kidney donation in the UK, how kidneys from living donors are shared...

1Zoe Williams2mo
Awesome, thanks for doing this! Post summary (feel free to suggest edits): Around 250 people on the UK kidney waiting list die each year. Donating your kidney via the UK Living Kidney Sharing Scheme can potentially kick off altruistic chains of donor-recipient pairs ie. multiple donations. Donor and recipient details are kept confidential. The process is ~12-18 months and involves consultations, tests, surgery, and for the author 3 days of hospital recovery. In a week since discharge, most problems have cleared up, they can slowly walk several miles, and they encountered no serious complications. (If you'd like to see more summaries of top EA and LW forum posts, check out the Weekly Summaries [https://forum.effectivealtruism.org/s/W4fhpuN26naxGCBbN] series.)

Organoids are collections of human cells used to model human organs.

I think the fastest route to AGI will involve integrating improvements in digital intelligence with advancements in synthetic biology via organoid-computer interfaces.

Brain organoids are currently able to...

3Derek Shiller3mo
Organoid intelligence seems much less dangerous than digital AGI. The major concerns with AI depend upon it quickly becoming superhuman: it might copy itself easily and hide what it is doing on different servers, it might expand its cognitive resources relatively effortlessly, it might think much faster than we can think. None of that seems likely to be possible for organoids.
3freedomandutility3mo
I’m assuming here that researchers will integrate sub-AGI digital intelligence with brain organoids to speed up the path to developing AGI. I’ll make this clearer in the post.

I was interested in philosophy for quite a while because i) I thought utilitarianism was interesting but also ii) I wanted to see what other schools of thought were out there. For a while I was kind...

2Miguel3mo
Have you read Meditations, by Marcus Aurelius? I highly recommend that book for you judging by the books you shared here. 

Hi all, I'm Joseph. I have a double degree in computational biology/statistics, have RA'd in protein engineering (structure/dynamics) and worked in proteomics (LCMS). Currently on an FTX regrant to find ways to help with Biosecurity/AI. I'm focusing on upskilling in AI, but keen to keep discussing biosecurity.

Hello! I'm a bio/ biomedical student / EA Ireland organizer. Am interested in GCBRs, policy and technical responses and the dual-use dilemma.  Just finished running some proto-fellowships on biosecurity.

Hi everyone, I'm a psychology graduate interested in learning about ways for dealing with infohazards especially in online journal publications. As well as what skills and projects are important in Bioethics. 

Is anyone working on AI  and biotech regulation in specific or/ have good readings for the state of the field / existing regulation?

You've probably already seen, but O'Brien & Nelson (2020) is good on health security implications https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32559154/ 

This is a linkpost for https://www.thinkingmuchbetter.com/main/the-bioethicists-are-mostly-alright/

Author’s Note: this post is based in part on Discord and Slack rants, as well as various conversations I have had recently, but is largely original

Special thanks to Applied Divinity Studies, for...

3Davidmanheim3mo
Per HHS [https://www.hhs.gov/ohrp/regulations-and-policy/belmont-report/read-the-belmont-report/index.html], "The Belmont Report... is the outgrowth of an intensive four-day period of discussions that were held in February 1976 at the Smithsonian Institution's Belmont Conference Center supplemented by the monthly deliberations of the Commission that were held over a period of nearly four years." Not sure who was part of the four-day discussion, but per that site, the commission included, among others: * Albert R. Jonsen, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Bioethics, University of California at San Francisco. * Karen Lebacqz, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Christian Ethics, Pacific School of Religion.

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