alexrjl

Twitter, Metaculus I work on the 1-on-1 team at 80,000hours talking to people about their careers; the opinions I've shared here (and will share in the future) are my own.

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Listen to more EA content with The Nonlinear Library

I would really like this option for the alignment forum

What Small Weird Thing Do You Fund?

I have previously offered to pay for therapy for another member of the community*, and would do so again if the situation arose. I think many people can feel worried/awkward/bad about spending money on their own health, especially mental health, so making this sort of offer can be really worth doing when the situation arises.

I've had people make the same offer to me, and think that the offer made me seek therapy sooner than I otherwise would have, and that this was a great decision.

*In both cases, no money actually changed hands, but the offer was genuine, not just made as a signal. 

EA Should Spend Its “Funding Overhang” on Curing Infectious Diseases

I liked this post overall, but I think it may be optimistic about the effect of challenge trials on speeding up vaccine development in a couple of the mentioned cases. I was in a malaria vaccine challenge trial 11 years ago, and if I remember correctly the same lab was also testing tb vaccines with challenge trials. I think challenge trials are a really good idea, but if they're already being used for some of the diseases mentioned then we don't have an opportunity to improve things much by funding more of them.

FTX EA Fellowships

Oh wow, that is a pretty big update.

List of EA funding opportunities

I'm finding this difficult to interpret - I can't find a way of phrasing my question without it seeming snarky but this isn't intended.

One reading of this offer looks something like:

if you have an idea which may enable some progress, it's really important that you be able to try and I'll get you the funding to make sure you do

Another version of this offer looks more like:

I expect basically never to have to pay out because almost all ideas in the space are useless, but if you can convince me yours is the one thing that isn't useless I guess I'll get you the money.

I guess maybe a way of making this concrete would be:

-have you paid out on this so far, if so, can you say what for?

-if not can you point to any existing work which you would have funded if someone had approached you asking for funding to try it?

FTX EA Fellowships

It's 10k plus travel plus housing plus co-working space, so it sounds like other than food basically the whole 10k would be disposable income. Potentially the housing provides food also. I'm not sure what cost of living is like in the Bahamas but that hardly sounds like "really low pay"

Listen to more EA content with The Nonlinear Library

This seems roughly consistent with "somewhat unlikely", I expect the fraction is similar for me.

Listen to more EA content with The Nonlinear Library

If we had to ask each person before converting their text to audio, it just wouldn’t feasibly happen.

 

Which part isn't feasible? If you have the skill and capacity on the team to write something which will scrape forum posts, check if they have karma above a threshold, convert them to speech, and post them as audio, it seems more likely than not that you'd have the skill/capacity to edit the tool such that it DMs the authors of the posts it wants to scrape, asking them to reply "Yes" or "OK", and then only uploads posts where the author did respond to the DM with such a reply.


If you think that most authors wouldn't reply, so this would make the tool much less useful, then this seems like a different claim. Especially if you're only doing recent posts, it seems somewhat unlikely that the authors will not see their DMs, which would mean that a lack of reply is not that unlikely to indicate a preference against inclusion.
 

Concerns about AMF from GiveWell reading - Part 1

I think telling someone not to post criticism without having done X, Y or Z seems bad, but I think asking someone for a title change to make clear that this is a set of concerns one person has come up with rather than e.g. news of an evaluation change from GiveWell is reasonable, and that's what I read the request as.

Specifically about asking organisations ahead of posting criticism, I think this is a good thing to do, but absolutely shouldn't be required before posting. In this case, I expect asking someone before posting would have led to a much higher quality post, as the responses from Charles and Linch would almost certainly have come up, and there would have been a chance to discuss them.

Clarifying the Petrov Day Exercise

I interpreted your comment as saying that I was "lambasting the foibles of being a well intentioned unilateralist", and that I should not be doing so. If that was not the intent I'm glad.

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