Re: Neurohacking [was Re: Major Public AI Backlash Inevitable.]

Eliezer S. Yudkowsky (
Wed, 04 Aug 1999 14:40:28 -0500

"Robert J. Bradbury" wrote:
> You may be right about not getting a chance to neurohack the
> kids (for ethical reasons), but I'll give you better than
> even money by ~2010-2015 you'll be given the opportunity
> to do it with adults.

Too late. I mean, I'll seize the chance if I can get it, but:

  1. If you want an actual Specialist, a true intelligence enhancement, you have to start with a kid and ideally an infant. I was showing signs as far back as age three, maybe earlier. I'd be surprised if they could even help before age 11 or so, and age 15-17 would be the point of maximum productivity. That's a ten-year lead time. If we got started on it tomorrow they might still not arrive in time for Singularity.
  2. Adults have less of a lead time - I would assume just a few months to get used to it - but aside from "freeing the mind" from the yoke of evolution, enhancing self-awareness, and bringing abilities under conscious control, there's not all that much you can do. That's nothing to sneeze at - it counts as true transhumanity - but it's not an AI Specialist either. Their primary role would be as absolutely trustworthy leaders and the like; I'd be thinking of them more in terms of cushions for nanocracy. -- Eliezer S. Yudkowsky Running on BeOS Typing in Dvorak Programming with Patterns Voting for Libertarians Heading for Singularity There Is A Better Way