**From:** Charles Hixson (*charleshixsn@earthlink.net*)

**Date:** Tue Jul 22 2008 - 15:44:35 MDT

**Next message:**B Ziomek: "Re: [sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**Previous message:**Scott Dickey: "Re: [sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**In reply to:**Scott Dickey: "[sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**Next in thread:**B Ziomek: "Re: [sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**Reply:**B Ziomek: "Re: [sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**Reply:**Matt Mahoney: "Re: [sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**Messages sorted by:**[ date ] [ thread ] [ subject ] [ author ] [ attachment ]

On Monday 21 July 2008 04:20:23 pm Scott Dickey wrote:

*> A question for all,
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*>
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*> What is your current estimate of the probability that humanity will survive
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*> to see a positive singularity?
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*>
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*> Where "survive" means to avoid existential threats as outlined by Nick
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*> Bostrom (1), and where "positive singularity" is the ideal espoused by SIAI
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*> (2)(3).
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*>
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*> -Scott
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*>
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*> (1) http://www.nickbostrom.com/existential/risks.html
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*> (2) http://www.intelligence.org/overview/whatisthesingularity
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*> (3) http://www.intelligence.org/overview/whyworktowardthesingularity
*

Now what's the probability of humanity surviving if a positive singularity

does *not* occur? There's already been documented one case where we were

within 30 seconds of full-scale thermonuclear war. I doubt that humanity

would survive that. Even without a singularity that number of people who

have their finger on one trigger or another has been increasing. More slowly

than I expected, I admit, but still increasing.

I rate the probability of humanity surviving in it's current form as extremely

close to zero. It requires an extremely destructive war that wipes out

civilization without quite killing off all people. Of the paths through the

future that I see as continuing to contain something that could reasonably be

called civilized humanity, they all lead through a positive singularity.

Nearly all of them include uploads and most of the include aggressive

intelligence amplification. (In the ones that don't include either, people

are merely pets. Few of those continue to contain people in the long run.)

For most of these projected futures I can't assign even a guesstimated

probability.

**Next message:**B Ziomek: "Re: [sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**Previous message:**Scott Dickey: "Re: [sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**In reply to:**Scott Dickey: "[sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**Next in thread:**B Ziomek: "Re: [sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**Reply:**B Ziomek: "Re: [sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**Reply:**Matt Mahoney: "Re: [sl4] What is the probability of a positive singularity?"**Messages sorted by:**[ date ] [ thread ] [ subject ] [ author ] [ attachment ]

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