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Is there no point in writing historical nonfiction books?


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#1
funkervogt

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If we believe that AGI will exist someday, and that it will invariably comb through every scrap of information about humans (e.g. - read every paper in government archives, watch every YouTube video, dig up every shard of ancient pottery), then it stands to reason that it will, on its own, create a comprehensive written record of human history, along with biographies about every human who ever lived in recorded history. 

 

If that's the case, what's the point of humans writing historical nonfiction books or biographies? You might spend five years carefully researching Hu Jintao's life and writing a 500-page biography, only to have an AI come around 30 years later to line out every other sentence for some factual inaccuracy that it knows of thanks to its 500 human-equivalent years of research on Hu Jintao (conducted in the space of a few days).

 

It seems like we'd be better off spending our time gathering and preserving information about humans now to feed into an AGI's brain in the future. 



#2
TranscendingGod

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This is not unique to "historical nonfiction books". Simply because someone or something might be better than you does not mean you should not try. Especially when that something does not even exist yet.

Plus these books are enormously beneficial today which is what we should focus on as beings of the present. Writing historical nonfiction books is also as you say "gathering and preserving information" so I see no reason why one would not dedicate time and write these books.

I for one enjoy books about history and that is reason enough for me to encourage any person who wants to be a historian and write some books to bloodly well do so. If people read more history the world would be better off I can tell you that. If people aren't writing about it then we're gonna be hurting real bad real soon.
  • rennerpetey likes this

The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth. 


#3
TranscendingGod

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In other words there is a point. However our utility and our reign as the supreme species able to produce the best work is quickly coming to an end. http://www.futuretim...ans-are-useless

The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth. 





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