Re: Dynamic optimism

Anders Sandberg (
19 Jan 1999 00:31:29 +0100

"Eliezer S. Yudkowsky" <> writes:

> 1) I think that negative mental states invoke a higher order of
> intelligence than positive mental states; consider the evolutionary context.

Actually, the evolutionary context suggests *different* kinds of intelligence for positive and negative mental states, the problems to be solved are different. And it is worth noting that among primates and especially humans the problems of communication and social interaction appears to have been especially important, given the evolution of these parts of the brain - and these aspects of intelligence are enhanced by positive mental states.

> 2) Problems *should* dominate our thinking. First, worry about
> survival/Singularity. Then, worry about creating the Culture.

If we turn into humorless nanosurvivalists while preparing for the Singularity, we might never reach the Culture even if we survive.

We should apply our intelligence to both solve problems and find new possibilities. Transhumanism began as the realization that there was possible ways out of the human condition, not as some effort to "solve" it. Being aware of risks does not preclude being aware of possibilities, and a sane person can balance both.

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!                  
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y