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Eliezer_Yudkowsky comments on Engelbart: Insufficiently Recursive - Less Wrong

11 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 26 November 2008 08:31AM

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Comment author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 26 November 2008 11:44:06PM 6 points [-]

Humanity is in a FOOM relative to the rest of the biosphere but of course it doesn't seem ridiculously fast to us; the question from our standpoint is whether a brain in a box in a basement can go FOOM relative to human society. Anyone who thinks that because we're already growing at a high rate, the distinction between that and a nanotech-capable superintelligence must not be very important, is being just a little silly. It may not even be wise to call them by the same name, if it tempts you to such folly - and so I would suggest reserving "FOOM" for things that go very fast relative to *you*.

For the record, I've been a coder and judged myself a reasonable hacker - set out to design my own programming language at one point, which I say not as a mark of virtue but just to demonstrate that I was in the game. (Gave it up when I realized AI wasn't about programming languages.)