Peter Thiel’s CS183: Startup - Class 17 - Deep Thought
He is an essay version of class notes from Class 17 of CS183: Startup. Errors and omissions are mine.
Three guests joined the class for a conversation after Peter’s remarks:
- D. Scott Brown, co-founder of Vicarious
- Eric Jonas, CEO of Prior Knowledge
- Bob McGrew, Director of Engineering at Palantir
Credit for good stuff goes to them and Peter. I have tried to be accurate. But note that this is not a transcript of the conversation.
Class 17 Notes Essay—Deep Thought
I. The Hugeness of AI
On the surface, we tend to think of people as a very diverse set. People have a wide range of different abilities, interests, characteristics, and intelligence. Some people are good, while others are bad. It really varies.
By contrast, we tend to view computers as being very alike. All computers are more or less the same black box. One way of thinking about the range of possible artificial intelligences is to reverse this standard framework. Arguably it should be the other way around; there is a much larger range of potential AI than there is a range of different people.
There is a great many ways that intelligence can be described and organized. Not all involve human intelligence. Even accounting for the vast diversity among all different people, human intelligence is probably only a tiny dot relative to all evolved forms of intelligence; imagine all the aliens in all planets of the universe that might or could exist.