Re: When does it pay to play (lottery)?

From: Slawomir Paliwoda (
Date: Sun Jan 23 2005 - 15:31:50 MST

>> If we assume this is consistent argument, the difference between a plain
>> lottery ticket and SIAI's version of a lottery ticket must lie in the
>> perception of their respective odds, with the latter "ticket" having much
>> better chance of winning than the former. So the question is very clear.
>> What kind of odds does SIAI think it has of succeeding,
> I think there's a way for me to get the odds to at least one-in-ten, if I
> make the right choices; nor are your own choices irrelevant. If a billion
> to one isn't good enough for you, get out and push, or die; those are your
> options.

And *that*, I think, might be the only acceptable way of making the argument
that a rational person should support FAI research rather than buy lottery
tickets consistent. There's a difference between the odds of winning lottery
and the odds of successful FAI project. The odds of winning lottery are
fixed while the odds of successful FAI project are not. We choose to support
FAI research because our support increases our chance of success.


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