Re: Pascal's Button

From: Stathis Papaioannou (
Date: Tue Apr 08 2008 - 07:11:24 MDT

On 08/04/2008, Nick Tarleton <> wrote:
> Something like Pascal's Mugging (
> ) is a
> problem even without someone trying to mug you. It may be that there
> is some way (say, a magic button hidden in the middle of the Bo├Âtes
> Void, hence the title) to allow 3^^^^3 (or any other very large but
> low-algorithmic-complexity number) times as many happy posthumans to
> exist than could ever exist in the universe without 'magic' - or, more
> generally, for most utility functions there may exist 'magic' to
> create much much more utility than would otherwise be possible. This
> is extremely unlikely, but it seems doubtful that it would be unlikely
> enough to have lower expected utility than the default course. This
> suggests that devoting massive resources to searching for magic is a
> convergent subgoal for any utility maximizer whose utility function
> admits of Really Big Numbers, and that even a Friendly AI, if it fit
> that description, would do so, possibly even to the exclusion of
> supporting existing humans, or at least diverting a majority of the
> resources that could go to existing humans.

This is along similar lines to the discussions in OB, but what reason
is there to ignore the possibility that searching for 3^^^^3 units of
magical utility will lead to at least 3^^^^3 units of magical

Stathis Papaioannou

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