I really agree. I think there is large benefits to things being “comfy” eg having good food and snacks, nice areas to sit and socialise etc etc however it makes me feel super icky attending fancy EAGs. (I also don’t know how standard this is for conferences).
Unlimited beverages has got to be unnecessary (and expensive).
Do we all need to do intense cause prio thinking?
Some off the cuff thoughts:
Currently I’m working on doing cause prio, finding my key uncertainties, trying to figure out what the most important problem is and how I can help solve it. Every time I feel I’m getting somewhere in my thinking I come up with 10 new things to consider. Although I enjoy this as an exercise it does take up a lot of time and its hard to know how “worth it” doing this is. I‘m now wondering were a good stopping point is / what proportion of time is useful to spend on thinking about these types of questions (especially if you’re unlikely to contribute to research). Part of me thinks that I should just defer to a few people who seem to know what they’re talking about then from there start putting my skills to use rather than spending a bunch of time philosphising about who matters and whether I’m a negative utilitarian. Does anyone have any (strong) thoughts about these two approaches and if it is helpful/necessary for everyone within EA to spend significant amounts of time doing cause prio work?