SIAI call for skilled volunteers and potential interns

post by AnnaSalamon · 2009-04-26T05:56:14.452Z · score: 14 (15 votes) · LW · GW · Legacy · 3 comments

Want to increase the odds that humanity correctly navigates whatever risks and promises artificial intelligence may bring?  Interested in spending this summer in the SF Bay Area, working on projects and picking up background with similar others, with some possibility of staying on thereafter?  Want to work with, and learn with, some of the best thinkers you'll ever meet? – more specifically, some of the best at synthesizing evidence across a wide range of disciplines, and using it to make incremental progress on problems that are both damn slippery and damn important? 

If so, drop us an email.  Show us your skills; give us a chance to jointly brainstorm what you might be able to do.

We are particularly interested in people who have *any* of the following traits:

The only musts are that you be capable, rational, and interested in helping reduce existential risk.

If you’re interested, send an email to annasalamon at gmail dot com, who will be doing the first-pass screening.  Include:

  1. Why you’re interested;
  2. What particular skills you would bring, and what evidence makes you think you have those skills (you might include a standard resume);
  3. Optionally, any ideas you have for what sorts of projects you might like to be involved in, or how your skillset could help us improve humanity’s long-term odds.

Our application process is fairly informal, so send us a quick email as initial inquiry and after some correspondence we can decide whether or not to follow up with more application components.

(Background on where we're coming from: SIAI is currently seeing who's out there and brainstorming possibilities (however, it now looks like a summer project likely will go forward).  If you're part of who's out there, do let us know.  Plausible projects include:

(This post is specially exempted from the "no AI discussion until after April" ban because it is time-urgent.)

ETA: Fluency in economics would also be a plus.  (But don't feel like you need all the traits.  Rationality, general competence, and unusual skill in one of the above is fine.  Special consideration if you're young and have indicators of promise, though for the most part we're looking for people who are older and have actual past success.)


Comments sorted by top scores.

comment by outlawpoet · 2009-04-26T21:05:32.708Z · score: 6 (6 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

What is the time-urgency, if you don't mind my asking? Other than Vassar's ascension, the Summer of Code projects, and LessWrong, I wasn't aware of anything going on at SingInst with any kind of schedule.

My first attempt at volunteering for Eliezer ended badly, for outside and personal reasons, and I haven't seriously considered it since, mostly because I didn't really understand the short-term goals of SingInst(Or I didn't agree with what I did understand of them).

Also, to be honest, the last thing that I found useful (in terms of my Singularitarian goals) to come out of it was CEV, which was quite a while ago now. Are there new projects, or private projects coming to public view? Why now?

comment by AnnaSalamon · 2009-04-27T12:27:02.832Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

The time-urgency is just that we may gather interns for the summer (summer being convenient for those in school, which includes some though not all of the pool of potential interns), and summer will be here soon.

As to new projects: if we have a summer interns group, then, yes. See the "plausible projects" list above.

comment by MBlume · 2009-04-26T06:12:36.640Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · LW(p) · GW(p)

OT, but were you by any chance typing this up as I was leaving the meetup?