META: The NOW prefix.

Eliezer S. Yudkowsky (
Tue, 23 Mar 1999 22:26:36 -0600

I am going to take a shot at starting a discussion of issues relevant to immediate choices. In particular, the "What needs doing" message that will follow. If people follow up with ideological disputes, the message will not yield results.

Initial subject line:
"NOW: What needs doing [Yudkowsky]"

Replies along the lines of "I don't think you should do that for <ultimate goals reason>", or anything else concerning the futuristic scenario, should change to ">H: *I* think nanotech is wonderful!"

Replies with your own set of projects should change to "NOW: What needs doing [MyName]".

If each and every project is not something that you could start doing NOW, legally, with modern technology, please change the subject line to
"LATER: What needs doing [MyName]". For example, "Let's genetically
engineer mosquitoes to carry an antiagathic" is LATER. "Let's investigate the possibility of using mosquitoes as cheap measles vaccinations" would be NOW. Items that need a billion dollars in funding are okay; but, insofar as I don't think anyone
with that kind of money is reading the list, please suggest, say, that the foundation be started with a million and that this seed money be used to seek funding from the major Internet tycoons. Ta-da! It's NOWed.


Please, please, PLEASE follow these rules.  If you don't, you are
sabotaging one of the last efforts to create a practical discussion
here.  You are sabotaging a discussion that has been widely demanded and

which many people have expressed interest in.  You are sabotaging the
effort to create a subject line that people with important resources can

read.  You are sabotaging the list.  You are sabotaging the projects. 
You are sabotaging the Singularity.  Unless one of the list owners tells

me it's impolite, I will follow up each and every offending message with

a corrected subject line and the phrase "CHANGE THE SUBJECT LINE,
PLEASE."  Again:  Please, please, PLEASE obey topic discipline.
--          Eliezer S. Yudkowsky

Disclaimer:  Unless otherwise specified, I'm not telling you
everything I think I know.