213Joined May 2018


I think this strongly depends on how much weight you expect forcasters on metaculus to put onto the actual operationalization rather than the question's "vibe". I personally expect quite a bit of weight on the exact operationalization, so I am generally not very happy with how people have been talking about this specific forecast (the term "AGI" often seems to invoke associations that are not backed by the forecast's operationalization), and would prefer a more nuanced statement in the report.

 (Note, that you might believe that the gap between the resolution criteria of the question and more colloqiual interpretations of "AGI" is very small, but this would seem to require an additional argument on top of the metaculus forecast). 


"AI: Forecasters on the community forecasting platform Metaculus think that artificial intelligent systems that are better than humans at all relevant tasks will be created in 2042."

How do you get this from the questions' operationalization? 

Is there a description of the desk-reject policy and/or statistics on how many applications were desk rejected? 

It does not really seem to address the reasoning from my second paragraph. You say: 

"Similarly, if people refused to consume any goods or services that were associated with net-positive greenhouse gas emissions, then those industries would rapidly decarbonize or go out of business.", 

but it seems to me that this would be way more costly for individuals than giving up on meat, in addition to leading to way larger economic damage in the short to medium term (without enough time for investments into replacement technologies to pay off). 

There seems to be a clear disanalogy in that if every individual stopped eating meat tomorrow, factory farming would be history very quickly. On the other hand, if everyone tried very hard to reduce their personal CO2 consumption, the effect seems more limited (unless people are really serious about it, in which case this would probably lead to major economic damage). 

The key difference seems to be that CO2 emissions are embedded in our current societies and economies in such a deep way, that we can only get out via long-term investment into replacement infrastructure (such as renewables, electric cars, public transportation etc.), which is not necessarily influenced that strongly by individual consumption. On the other hand,  meat eating is exclusively about the sum of personal demand, even though measures to reduce supply via policy or decrease demand via investment into viable substitutes would still be highly valuable.  (I imagine that I might change my mind if this line of thought was convincingly refuted).

While I also disagree with the top level post, this seems overly hostile.

Thank you! 

5% does sound very alarming to me, and is definitely a lot higher than I would have said at the beginning of the crisis (without having thought about it much, then). 

Also, beyond the purely personal, are there any actions that could be taken by individuals right now  that would have a positive impact on humanity's chances to recover, conditional on nuclear war? 

Some (probably naive) ideas: 

  • Downloading and printing vital information about how to rebuild food supply and other vital infrastructure (so that it can easily be accessed despite varying degrees of infrastructure collapse); I guess ALLFED's articles might be a good starting point (even though I could not quickly find any distilled strategy document/user guide for their research)?
  • Increase the likelihood that you will be able to distribute this information: Ensure survival, build local networks, practice leadership skills etc.
  • Make sure others do the same: While there already seem to be a lot of preppers, I do not know whether their culture emphasizes strategies for rebuilding a flourishing civilization over mere survival.  "Altruistic prepping" might be a relatively neglected niche (or not, these are just off the cuff thoughts...)

Putin seems to have ordered deterrence forces (which include nuclear arms) to be on high alert, roughly an hour ago.

Can someone weigh in about how unprecedented this is? Some media coverage has compared the severity of the current situation to the Cuba Crisis, which would be extremely alarming if remotely true. 

Miscalibration might cut both ways... 

On one hand, It seems quite plausible for forecasts like this to usually be underconfident about the likelihood of the null event, but on the other hand recent events should probably have substantially increased forecasters' entropy for questions around geopolitical events in the next few days and weeks. 

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