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Will there be a positive transition to a world with radically smarter-than-human artificial intelligence?


A world with radically smarter-than-human intelligence would probably be very different than the one we live in today. Bostrom (2003) speculated on the likely outcome following the creation of artificial superintelligence,

It is hard to think of any problem that a superintelligence could not either solve or at least help us solve. Disease, poverty, environmental destruction, unnecessary suffering of all kinds: these are things that a superintelligence equipped with advanced nanotechnology would be capable of eliminating. Additionally, a superintelligence could give us indefinite lifespan, either by stopping and reversing the aging process through the use of nanomedicine, or by offering us the option to upload ourselves. A superintelligence could also create opportunities for us to vastly increase our own intellectual and emotional capabilities, and it could assist us in creating a highly appealing experiential world in which we could live lives devoted to in joyful game-playing, relating to each other, experiencing, personal growth, and to living closer to our ideals.

A world is said to have "radically smarter-than-human artificial intelligence" if there exists at least one artificial system that can outperform all contemporaneous humans at any non-trivial intellectual or physical task, such as proving mathematical theorems, engineering, scientific research, and manual labor. A positive transition to such a world is said to be a transition where the dominant influence over the future course of history takes place under the direction of widely held moral ideals.

As a negative example, if a dictator created a superintelligence and used it to amass wealth for himself at the expense of the rest of humanity, this does not count. Likewise, if humans succeed at creating some superintelligences but mistakenly fail to create one that shares human values, then this also doesn't count as a positive transition.

While it is exceptionally difficult to come up with an operationalization for this question that could yield no false negatives or positives, my current guess is that if Metaculus still exists after such a transition, it will be obvious whether the transition was positive. Therefore, I leave the resolution up to moderator discretion.

If no such transition occurs before 2300, this question resolves ambiguously.

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