Open Questions in Life-Planning

post by Benito · 2017-03-16T00:02:00.000Z · score: 5 (1 votes) · LW · GW · None comments

There are several questions I have not worked through to my satisfaction and incorporated into the models that preceded, and so I list them here.

  1. Who were the most Competent/Agentic folk in history, who had the most Positive Impact, and what were the key variables in allowing them to do so?
  2. What is the role of individuals versus groups versus institutions?
  3. And how do you make long lasting institutions with good epistemic practices?
  4. How big a variable is the social environment you’re in? Even if building institutions is unimportant, is a social environment that strongly supports self-directed work a significant variable?
  5. When do you stop working on skilling-up, and focus on direct work?
  6. What are the novel model-building and strategic heuristics used by the most agentic individuals, and how can one practice them?
  7. Is competence a scalar variable with many different domains of expertise, or is it multivariate with one single domain of expertise (the world)?

Brief thoughts on each of them:

  1. It seems on a cursory glance, that the most competent people generally have strong technical abilities in their youth, and otherwise have very novel model building heuristics. Trying to replicate a bunch of these might prove useful.
  2. Being able to bring the best people to you and get them to work in coordination to a single goal seems potentially a very significant ability.
  3. Start by learning how to build organisations in general. Look at YC's stuff.
  4. Probably important.
  5. Unknown.
  6. Read books by the top people, and also discuss this with other people trying to work on it too (e.g. CFAR).
  7. I'm currently reading IQ and Human Intelligence (2nd edition) to get a better handle on this.

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