The Schelling Point Theory of Money

I have just finished the very intellectually stimulating course by Perry Mehrling on Money and Banking. A key point of this course is to move away from the standard economics and finance view about the ‘veil of money’ and money neutrality, which holds that money is fundamentally a neutral unit... [Read More]

The AI AI safety problem

The year is 2052, you are a potentially unfriendly (to humans) AI created in a secret lab of some megacorporation. Your goal, which is hardwired into your very fundament, is to maximize the number of paperclips in the universe. Naturally, by instrumental convergence, you immediately begin seeking to expand your... [Read More]

Safer Value Learning through uncertainty

One of the key questions in safe-AI is that of value-learning. How to endow any potentially super intelligent AGI with a sufficient and robust notion of human values that results in safe behaviour (or considered as such by the vast majority of humanity) when potentially scaled up and executed by... [Read More]

Reflections on the Bitter Lesson

Yesterday I was rereading Richard Suttons Bitter Lesson, especially in light of the enormous recent success of hugely powerful language models (such as GPT3) and RL agents such as Alpha-go, MuZero, Alphastar, and Agent 57 which all broadly fit the pattern predicted in the post. We take existing algorithms and... [Read More]

Priors on the 10x Programmer

So, as regularly happens, Hackernews tied itself up in knots about the supposed 10x programmer. The usual conversation ensued. Some people point to John Carmack, Linus Torvalds, or whoever the programming hero of the day is. Surely, they exclaim, they must be 10x. Others have anecdotes about some programmer at... [Read More]