Re: Singularity: The Trendline Argument

maxm (
Mon, 28 Sep 1998 21:13:10 +0200

From: Robin Hanson <>

>It is certainly true that smarter workers are now contributing more to
>growth that larger populations. But the question is what could create a
>big *change* in that growth rate, and it's not clear we know how to help
>people learn much faster. But there is a potential for enabling much
>faster labor population growth.

In software production it is documented that the difference in allmost any which way you can meassure it (productivity, quality etc.) has a factor of 10 between poor and good programmers, and between experienced and new programmers.

As more and more parts of the "old" production will be like software development many of the same mechanisms will step into effect.

Most of the people in the world has little or no education. If there is as many as 500 millions with higher educations it is probably far to high a figure. This means that there is perhaps 5 billions that can be far better educated. Again an improvement factor of ten is possible.

So somewhere between 10-100 times better/more... prodution can be made possible through education.

Naturally these figures are nowhere near precise but i am convinced that the general idea is true and that there is room for massive improvement in production through better education and training.

A factor 10-100 in labour population growth will most likely have some side effects (economical, ecological...) that are very hard to predict.


Max M Rasmussen
New Media Director Denmark