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YafahEdelman

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I am sympathetic to several of the high level criticisms in this post but have a few relatively minor criticisms.

1) Redwood Funding 

  • This post says "Redwood's funding is very high relative to other labs." 
    I think this is very false: OpenAI, Anthropic, and DeepMind have all recieved hundreds of millions of dollars, an order of magnitude above Redwood's funding. 
  • This post says "Redwood’s funding is much higher than any other non-profit lab that [OpenPhil funds]."
    This is false, OpenAI was a non-profit when it received 30 million dollars from OpenPhil (link to grant), 50% more than this post cites Redwood as receiving. 
  • This post casts OP having seats on the Board of Redwood as a negative. I think that in fact, having board seats on a place you fund is pretty normal I think, and considered responsible - the lack of this by VCs was a noted failure after the FTX collapse.

 

2) Field Experience

The post says: 

Redwood's most experienced ML researcher spent 4 years working at OpenAI prior to joining Redwood. This is comparable experience to someone straight out of a PhD program, the minimum experience level of research scientists at most major AI labs.

This does not strike me as true - modern ML Research is an extremely new field, many research scientists in it did not start out with PhDs in ML. 

 

3) Publishing is Relative to Productivity

I think it plausible that Redwood publishes a normal amount relative to their research productivity. This post seems to agree with that. I think them publishing more, absent them doing more research, would be bad, as it would lead to them publishing lower quality research. 

My impression is also that Redwood's published papers have stood out for being unusually thorough and informative about their research among ML papers.