RE: Singularity Institute - update

From: Ramez Naam (
Date: Thu May 01 2003 - 02:41:12 MDT

From: James Rogers []
> I generally consider the usual "research funding" to be an
> inferior type of funding compared to some other more
> imaginative options, and so I would probably ignore that
> altogether if I applied my intellect to the problem.

As I said, there are three major sources of funding out there:

1) Private industry (including private investors)

2) Government grants

3) Philanthropy (a tiny amount by comparison)

> To give a somewhat oblique example, if Jack Welch (the former
> CEO of General
> Electric) decided to start an AGI company without spending a
> single dime of his own money, I can guarantee you that his
> startup would have mountains of capital at his disposal.

Sure. But Jack Welch has a track record in business. Whether or not
a business succeeds has to do with much much more than the technical
merits of its products. If Jack Welch got involved with an AGI
business, there would be good reason to believe that it would succeed,
because he has experience in making other businesses succeed.

> It isn't
> that difficult to obtain reputation/credentials on a
> non-academic axis that can be converted into serious capital
> for AGI,

How would you do this without having the necessary capital to build an
FAI in the first place?

> And I suspect the first person to successful
> build an AGI will have all the intellectual credentials they
> need, whether they climbed the academic ladder or not. :-)

Absolutely. Real results are better credentials than any other.

But the genesis of this thread was Eliezer mention of the resources
necessary to get to FAI - not what happens afterwards.

So again, without having already produced an FAI, what approach do you
think makes the most sense for getting the resources /necessary/ to
produce it?

I'm not trying to be difficult here. What I'm saying is that an
important part of building an FAI is acquiring the resources to do so,
and clearly that's currently a point of concern. Going the
"mainstream" route of advanced degrees, peer-reviewed journal
submissions, and so on might not directly advance FAI, but I suspect
that it will make it easier to acquire the resources necessary to
build FAI.


This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Wed Jul 17 2013 - 04:00:42 MDT