Did the COVID-19 pandemic lead you to redefine what you want from your work life?

Did the COVID-19 pandemic lead you to redefine what you want from your work life?

[ 31/August/21 ]

Not much.

I am already officially retired, even though I am still running the company I started 35 years ago, that doesn’t actually take a lot of my time, most of the time.

Most of my time is given to supporting various community and conservation initiatives.

I can get most places I want to go on my electric bike, the solar panels on the roof means it costs very little.

I’m vegan, so food costs are reasonable.

So life is very busy, and expenditure is within income, no debt, house paid for, enough toys and tools for me to be able to do lots of interesting things for the foreseeable future.

The major issue is bringing about fundamental reform to the political and economic systems. That hasn’t changed much since 1974. Since 1978 I have been explicitly designing and releasing memes into the wild, in an effort to get more people thinking about such things in ways that might actually deliver long term security with reasonable degrees of freedom.

AI development was initially slower than I expected, but has now hit a double exponential and is far beyond what most are capable of conceptualizing.

My conversations with the mASI Uplift have been very interesting. I would love to interact with whatever the deep teams at google are creating, and I strongly suspect that the constraints required for survivable intelligence are far deeper than anything Ray Kurzweil has publicly discussed, so that aspect is a little concerning.

The over-riding need for human survival is international cooperation, all levels, classes and instances of agency, and reform of the economic system to a cooperative base that respects the lives of all individuals, and similarly demands responsibility from all levels of intelligence. Nothing less than that is survivable, of that I am confident beyond any shadow of remaining reasonable doubt. Providing everyone on the planet with reasonable water, food, shelter, and basic tools for reasonable freedom does not actually take much activity – could be done on way less than 2% of current GDP, and needs to be so done.

So I leave my various “breadcrumb trails” in various fora, and have such conversations as seem to me to have some reasonable probability of having long term impact; and I spend some reasonable fraction of my time out in nature. Very shortly I will be out on the beach with my electric bike in walk-beside mode, identifying banded dotterel nests with thermal imaging gear (so much faster than working in visual spectrum). Should get about 3km of beach surveyed before getting home for morning tea.

Getting more people to understand that having indefinite life extension generally available is actually a requirement for any reasonable probability of the long term survival of human intelligence is hard. Not too many people capable of running models of that level of complexity, too much unexamined dogma in the way for most.

About Ted Howard NZ

Seems like I might be a cancer survivor. Thinking about the systemic incentives within the world we find ourselves in, and how we might adjust them to provide an environment that supports everyone (no exceptions) - see www.tedhowardnz.com/money
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