A long but excellent article. My highlights are below:
+Three important revolutions shaped the course of history:
1. The Cognitive Revolution kick-started history about 70,000 years ago.
2. The Agricultural Revolution sped it up about 12,000 years ago.
3. The Scientific Revolution, which got underway only 500 years ago, may well end history and start something completely different
+Keep your eyes on the ball. Focus on the main global problems facing humanity:
1. Nuclear war
2. Ecological collapse
3. Technological disruption
+Issues that politicians commonly talk about—terrorism, migration, inequality, poverty—are lesser worries, if not distractions.
+Learn to distinguish reality from illusion
+Care about suffering
+ Progress is basically an illusion; the Agricultural Revolution was “history’s biggest fraud,” and liberal humanism is a religion no more founded on reality than any other.
+Some of the social ills caused by a company like Facebook should be understood as bugs—“and, as good engineers, they are trying to fix the bugs”
+Losing mental autonomy to A.I.—can be at least partly countered by citizens cultivating greater mindfulness
+It’s possible to measure people’s blood pressure by processing video of their faces. A government that can see your blood boiling during a leader’s speech can identify you as a dissident
+Freedom depends to a large extent on how much you know yourself, and you need to know yourself better than, say, the government or the corporations that try to manipulate you.
+Homo sapiens became uniquely able to communicate untruths
+“Money is a “fiction,” as are corporations and nations”. Fictions require believers, and exert power only as long as a “communal belief” in them persists. Every social construct, then, is a kind of religion
+The danger facing the world could be “stated in the form of a simple equation, which might be the defining equation of the twenty-first century:
B x C x D = AHH.
Which means: biological knowledge, multiplied by computing power, multiplied by data, equals the ability to hack humans.
+The thing “most responsible for your suffering is your own mind."
+ If we think about art as kind of playing on the human emotional keyboard, then I think A.I. will very soon revolutionize art completely.”
+ The forager economy provided most people with more interesting lives than agriculture or industry do
+“One thing I think about how humans work—the only thing that can replace one story is another story.”