From: Zero Powers (
Date: Tue Oct 24 2000 - 15:38:10 MDT

>From: "Eliezer S. Yudkowsky" <>

>Zero Powers wrote:
> >
> > "Your dollars accomplish around a hundred times as much"??? Really?
> > Don't get me wrong, I'm not knocking Exi or agreeing with Ian. But I
> > your comments might be just as much an overstatement as his post was.
>Hey, get with the Singularity. Billions of lives are at stake here. If
>ExI has a total pre-Singularity lifetime budget of, say, $1M (sadly,
>a huge overestimate) and it contributes a hundredth of one percent to the
>"win" - assuming we win - then that's the equivalent of, say, six lives for
>ten dollars. Alternatively, if the existence of ExI means the Singularity
>happens four days sooner, then that's also the equivalent of six lives for
>dollars. Can the Red Cross match that? I really don't think so. I think
>they'd be hard put to save another six lives with another thousand dollars.

I still think you're over-estimating the good being done by ExI, and
under-estimating the good being done by the likes of the Red Cross. But
you're a card-carrying zealot, so you're entitled. If you were among the
thousands of beneficiaries of such NGO efforts, you'd be screaming:

"ExI? We don't need no stinking ExI! Thank God for the Red Cross!!"

(BTW I don't use the term "zealot" here in any pejorative sense. Ghandi,
Thomas Paine and MLK, Jr. were zealots. Sometimes a little zealotry goes a
long way :)


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