Douglas Knight

31 karmaJoined Mar 2022


So if you intuit that we can do better than peer review, I would recommend getting a PhD in economics under a highly-respected supervisor, and learn how to investigate institutions like peer review (against proposed alternatives!) with a level of rigor that satisfies high-prestige economists.

Wow, that's really specific. Are you trying to evoke Robin Hanson? Before following him, ask him if it's a good idea. I think he regrets his path.

The NYT may be an outlier among papers, but this instance is not an outlier of the NYT approach.

That she is honest is evidence that it was an honest mistake. That she is careful is evidence that it was not.

Another trusted party signing data is mail providers (DKIM), in particular mail sent through Google is signed. Google can't repudiate these signatures, but you have to trust them not to write new history. Matthew Green calls for the opposite: for Google to publish its old private keys to destroy this information.

My guess is that this is the June figure for the FTX Future Fund grant commitments. The current figure is $160M as of September 1st. Some of these grants were in installments, especially the multi-year ones, and not all of the money was transferred. This Fund was "longtermist" and I do not see a dollar figure on other FTX charitable giving. This does not include $500M in equity in Anthropic.

Added, weeks later: Or maybe he got it from NYT:

As recently as last month, the umbrella FTX Foundation said it had given away $140 million, of which $90 million went through the FTX Future Fund dedicated to long-term causes. It is unclear how much of that money made it to the recipients and how much was earmarked for giving in installments over several years.

which seems to be sourced from NYT a month ago:

Mr. Bankman-Fried makes his donations through the FTX Foundation, which has given away $140 million, of which $90 million has gone through the group’s Future Fund toward long-term causes.

I suspect that these numbers are actually delivered, not promises. My guess is that the Future Fund pledged $190 million, 160 directly and 30 through regranting, delivered 100 and failed to deliver $90 million (a). (Plus $50 million not through the Future Fund, at least some of which counts as EA.)

Robinhood allowed leverage, but I don't think that had anything to do with the crisis.

Warren Buffett (following Ted Turner) funded the project that is the most impressive example of just throwing money at a problem: buying ex-Soviet nuclear material. Most of the credit should go to Nunn and Lugar, but if we're talking about scalability and what billionaires can do, this should be exhibit A.


Distinguish or isolate the intro and conclusion about the Nonlinear Library from the main content. 

Ideally, use a different voice (eg, a human recording). A common solution is to insert a chime. Either of those would require splicing audio files. If you want to keep to just splicing text files, maybe there's a way of inserting something to make the TTL pause?

It may be hard to compare art from different periods, but it is direct to compare science and engineering from different periods because the same thing was discovered or invented multiple times.

Knowledge is not a ratchet. Sometimes knowledge is lost. But it is not only catastrophes like burning libraries and riots against scholars. There are Leaden Ages where scientific knowledge is lost century after century, such as Alexandria for about five centuries starting  150AD. Any period of progress is a Golden Age compared to that. Do people know that they are in a Leaden Age? I don't think the Alexandrians knew. The first task is not to fool yourself.

If a second age reconstructs the knowledge of the first age faster, it might be because they are better, or it might be because they are supported by the notes of the pioneers. But what if they are slower? This is strong evidence that the first age really was Golden. In particular, the Hellenistic Age, 330-130BC, subsumed virtually all scientific progress for thousands of years, at least to 1600, and maybe to 1700.