This is a linkpost for https://rootsofprogress.org/links-and-tweets-2023-05-16
- Animator needed for a molecular biology illustration project (via @kanzure)
- Heidi Williams seeking a biotech VC co-author on improving university tech transfer
- Foresight Vision Weekend 2023 (via @foresightinst). I’ll be speaking!
- Helion has sold some fusion energy, to be delivered in 2028. Buyer: Microsoft. WSJ has coverage. My guess: the most important impact of this is to focus Helion employees on an external deadline. (Via @Helion_Energy, @sama)
- Hannah Ritchie’s new book: Not the End of the World, “an optimistic, data-driven look at how we solve our environmental problems” (via @_HannahRitchie)
- ThereCraft has a 20-lb drone that can carry 10 lbs of cargo 180 miles
- Patrick Collison interview with Sam Altman. And a summary
- Derek Lowe on a promising trial of an mRNA-based cancer treatment
- Anthropic’s Claude gets ~75k-word context length (via @finmoorhouse)
- OpenAI attempts to use GPT-4 to explain individual neurons in GPT-2 (via @blader)
- What’s the most wonderful textbook you’ve ever read? (@michael_nielsen)
- Max Roser crowdsourcing suggestions for improvements to Our World in Data
- Can desalination plants be started and stopped (to use intermittent power)?
- Is there any sense of economic “waste heat?”
- Average number of math authors per paper 1900–2000?
- “What man has done, cannot man aspire to?”
- In praise of clear thinking: “it makes life easier for those who disagree with you”
Tweets & threads
- We eradicated smallpox for less than the cost of one mile of subway today in NYC
- Why does it seem easier for humans to drive than fly, but opposite for machines?
- Build a canal from the sea the desert, create a new lake. No, it’s not the Salton Sea
- Why don’t whales get more cancer? Maybe their cells are good at DNA repair
- Classics + progress studies would be a powerful curriculum. Maybe like this?
- “Machine Assisted Thought”, a seminar on AI for middle and high school students
- Kevin Kelly writing a book on feasible, desirable AI-enabled futures for humanity
- An inadvertent, uncontrolled experiment in reverse geoengineering
- The idea of a social tradeoff between GDP and “traditional values” is wrongheaded
- Outlier events drive policy conversations, but solving for outliers makes bad policy
- “Average” does not mean “typical.” The average Canadian lives in the US
- Joyce Carol Oates reacts to Derik Parfit’s ideas about bereavement