author: niplav, created: 2022-07-20, modified: 2022-07-21, language: english, status: notes, importance: 3, confidence: remote
What I might do if I magically got hold of a very large amount of
money, and couldn't spend it maximally altruistically.
I sometimes like to engage in idle speculation. One of those speculations
is: “If someone came up to me and told me that they would give me a lot
of money, but only under the condition that I would spend most of it on
unconventional and interesting projects, and I was forbidden to give it to
Effective Altruist organizations narrowly defined, what would I do? Not
forbidding the projects from having positive consequences accidentally,
The following is a result of this speculation in particular. Many of
the ideas might be of questionable ethicality; I hope it's clear I would
think a bit more about them if I were to actually put them into practice
(which I won't, since I don't have that type of money, nor am I likely
to get hold of it anytime soon).
Lots of these ideas aren't mine, and I have tried to attribute them
wherever I could find the source.
- Snowball fights: I remember having a lot of fun with snowball fights during breaks in school, but I haven't seen them happen anywhere outside since leaving school.
- Save dying languages
- Raise children bilingual, first language Lojban
- Philosophically Solving Language
- Via Conlangs
- We have Loglan & Lojban & Láadan & Ithkuil, but there's never been a concerted efffort at this?
- A good series set in the SCP Universe
- Spinoff series set in the antimemetics division
- Hard Takeoff Movie
- Humans die in the first minute, space megastructure & multiverse-wide cooperation & later ontokinetics shenanigans follow
- Double Crux: The Podcast. Super long (>>10h) discussions between two people trying to resolve a mutual disagreement, with moderation and fact checking help
- A Fictional Ethnography and Anthropology of Native Antarticans
- Beautiful Geometric Objects
- The platonic solids in physical form, similar to tungsten cubes, but of varying size & material (from a steel icosahedron with a few centimetres vertex length to a granite cube or obsidian dodecahedron twenty metres at each side)—the stuff that would make future people say "they considered themselves a powerful culture"
- Buy the movie rights to House of Leaves to make sure noone can ever make a movie out of it.
- Better Wireheading
- Achieving reversible (you can remove it and the rat feels/behaves as before) & non-adaptative (no hedonic adaptation happening) & non-addictive (isn't sought after when removed) & safe (doesn't have any serious health consequences) & ability-preserving (cognitive function isn't impaired, and ideally improved) & anti-slippery (when in the state the being doesn't seek more of it) long-term pleasure centric wireheading via extensive experiments on animals, either by direct brain stimulation or novel compounds.
- This one's pretty ethically questionable
- Replicate the work at the semalab that uses ultrasound brain stimulation for meditation enhancement.
- Breeding Superintelligent Octopuses
- Cloning Extinct Animals
- In order: Passenger Pigeons, Thylacines, Dodos, Wooly Mammoths, Neanderthals, John von Neumann, Srinivasa Ramanujan…
- Masturbation Research
- Explorables for Causal Inference
- Find drugs that cause short-term memory loss with ideally no side effects (useful for blinding in scientific studies)
- Studying foreveraloners
- Run Newcomb's problem in real life
- The Distillation Team
- A group of people whose sole job it is to talk with smart people whose perfectionism blocks them from writing any of their ideas down and doing it for them
- The Meta-Analysis Team
- A group of people who, whenever I have a question, do a deep dive into the topic & produce a large & in-depth report on the topic (ideally Gwern-style, but I would be willing to make compromises)
- A roadmap to learn everything
- A list of textbooks whose order is optimised for having all dependencies covered.
- Plus professionally done sets of flashcards for those textbooks
- New modes of being
- What activity-shaped holes are there in our society? How can we find them?
- At some point someone must have invented music. That was a pretty big deal! Maybe we're missing a bunch of these kinds of things and don't even notice.
- Same for meditation.
- Really Out There Stuff Institute (ROTSI)
- Focus on exotic decision theories, acausal trade, UDASSA, infinite ethics etc. Global priorities research on steroids.