Less Wrong is a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality. Please visit our About page for more information.

Eliezer_Yudkowsky comments on Sensual Experience - Less Wrong

13 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 21 December 2008 12:56AM

You are viewing a comment permalink. View the original post to see all comments and the full post content.

Comments (84)

Sort By: Old

You are viewing a single comment's thread.

Comment author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 21 December 2008 09:17:38PM 12 points [-]

@Doug: By the logic of shutting up and multiplying, it does make moral sense if your life is that awful, you've got strong enough confidence in both the preservation process and that someone will create a Friendly AI to revive you, and there isn't anything left you can do for other people.

I mean, if I was wrinkling up like a prune from old age and my brain was rotting to the point where I had nothing special left to contribute, I'd prefer to be cryonically suspended immediately rather than wait another 10 years to die of Alzheimer's.

However, under the present legal system, all suicides get autopsied which is incompatible with cryosuspension, not to mention many life insurance policies. So no, you can't actually do this.

Though if the world manages to continue that long, it's a law that I hope will change before I get an opportunity to die of Alzheimer's. They might be able to retrieve lost memories after bringing me back, but the dying process doesn't sound like fun. Regardless of the morality, it's a fact that death doesn't scare me nearly as much as old age.

Comment author: diegocaleiro 22 November 2010 01:53:09PM 4 points [-]

I would emphasize here the "There isn't anything you can do for other people aspect".

If your life is awful, and you can exchange it for a life working towards whichever transhuman goal suits you best: "FAI" "Cognitive Enhancing" "Avoiding Catastrophic Risk" "Biological Immortality", then you may have a reason not to be packed no ice yet.

Even if you think your skills are not suited to helping these areas, you could become the assistant of someone whom you think does, rendering their time more productive towards your goals.

Comment author: taryneast 04 June 2011 06:06:37PM *  3 points [-]

However, under the present legal system, all suicides get autopsied which is incompatible with cryosuspension, not to mention many life insurance policies. So no, you can't actually do this.

...perhaps in the country in which you are currently living. There are other countries, with other laws... if this is a choice that actually matters enough to you.

...alternatively, you can take some time to make it not look like a suicide.

Comment author: MixedNuts 26 July 2011 04:20:57PM 9 points [-]

death doesn't scare me nearly as much as old age

O_O

This closely pattern-matches ableist attitudes like "$disability is worse than death!", where people with $disability shrug and say "Enh, we're good. We can't do $thing, but we can't be knitting prodigies either - and neither can you, and you're not whining about it all that much."

Admittedly, losing abilities is no fun, and mental abilities are genuinely good and important (though how much is not that clear - people with Down's are happier), and aging then dying is strictly worse than just dying... but still, scarier than death?

Comment author: JackEmpty 26 July 2011 04:47:00PM 5 points [-]

I'd interpret "old age" as "(neurological [and therefore identity] breakdown as a result of common diseases from) old age".

Comment author: Alicorn 26 July 2011 10:15:06PM 7 points [-]

Certain forms of disability scare me more than death does. They might or might not turn out, after the fact (heaven forfend), to be so awful that I would rather die than continue living with them; but scariness-wise? Oh yes. A smaller set of disabilities, mostly mental ones, seem to me to be so horrendous relative to my values that even if I think about them in a way that renders fear per se moot, I think I'd rather die than suffer them.