Elsewhere: Twitter Bot Wars & GPT-4's True Power
Posts I did in other venues on topics of interest to my newsletter audience.
I hate to be like “web3 fixes this” about anything in 2023, not because it’s not true but because nobody wants to read that now that they’ve either lost their shirt in crypto or are feeling smug about others having lost their shirts in crypto.
But still, when Musk started tweeting about how the future of social media is paid subscriptions because botnet operators will be priced out, I had to say something. Crypto has been working on this proof-of-human problem for a long time now, and there are shipping solutions.
You can read my argument in, or in Meteor, a new web3-focused publication where my RETURN piece was reprinted.
The other piece I did this week outside this newsletter was a post forwhere I look into the issue of GPT-4’s missing parameter count and what it might tell us about the true power that OpenAI is holding back:
This piece is a follow-up to my most recent post on the nascent AI culture wars, and it picks up where that piece’s postscript left off. A sample:
Here’s my thesis: The performance numbers published in the GPT-4 technical report aren’t really like normal benchmarks of a new, leading-edge technical product, where a company builds the highest-performing version it can and then releases benchmarks as an indicator of success and market dominance. Rather, these numbers were selected in advance by the OpenAI team as numbers the public could handle, and that wouldn’t be too disruptive for society. They said, in essence, “for GPT-4, we will release a model with these specific scores and no higher. That way, everyone can get used to this level of performance before we dial it up another notch with the next version.”
… So based on this paragraph alone, we should look at GPT-4’s benchmark performance as a pre-selected outcome. They looked at a point on their parameters vs. performance curves and said, “Let’s turn the scaling dial so that GPT-4 lands… there! That’s about what we estimate society will be ready for when we launch this in a few months.”
If you’re a regular reader of this newsletter then you’re going to want to read the whole thing because it’s kind of important and relevant to the whole issue of how fast all of this is going.
Finally, I made substantial editorial contributions to this largeexplainer on central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), which I encourage you to check out if you're interested in crypto, money, and related issues:
I’m not sure how many of you follow me on the bird site, so here’s a poll asking whether periodic roundups of some of my more substantial threads are worth doing in this newsletter.
So with this first thread, I kinda lost my mind a bit… I signed up for Midjourney and just couldn’t stop with this silliness.
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I came across the ReAct pattern:
The piece on pirate wires was oddly chilling. Up until earlier today I just laughed about AI X-risk, but there's something about how you describe Altman's caution that gives me an actually bad feeling for the first time. I'm hoping this is just an artifact of the piece being well written.