Re: Thinking about the future...
Tue, 27 Aug 96 11:17:14 GMT

Robin Hanson wrote to Max More:

>I think you attribute too much to values and too little to
>social institutions.

This is an important issue, but not one that is easily
settled by a few short mailings. Let's begin by trying to
make sure we understand what you mean.

Is your idea roughly this: That the values humans have are
relatively constant, or, to the extent the vary, are largely
determined by social and cultural factors; and that
therefore the most significant determinant of the behaviour
of powerful agents is the societal framework in which they
live and act?

If this is your idea, and if it is true of the world today,
then we may go on to see whether or not a world with >AI
etc. would be different in any way that would make the
statement less true in such a world.

(Please tell me if this is off the mark, for I have as yet
very little knowledge of the social sciences.)

Nicholas Bostrom