[Open Thread] What virtual events are you hosting that you'd like to open to the EA Forum-reading public?

post by Linch · 2020-04-07T01:49:05.770Z · score: 16 (7 votes) · EA · GW · 10 comments

Since many of us around the world are in various stages of quarantine and all events are online, it might make sense to open up some of our planned local events to the wider EA public.

So here's an open thread for open events!


Comments sorted by top scores.

comment by vaidehi_agarwalla · 2020-04-08T04:27:28.217Z · score: 9 (4 votes) · EA(p) · GW(p)

Weekly EA Icebreaker Socials (speed friending sessions)

This is an opportunity for EAs from different countries to connect with each other. These involve you getting paired up with different people to play games, answer interesting questions, or just get to know each other. You'll get to meet several new people each week.

Last weekend's international icebreaker event had great reviews.

We will host 3 sessions per week for different timezones:

EUROPE/AFRICA (every Thurs 8-9:30pm GMT): https://www.facebook.com/events/163517728167150/

AUSTRALASIA/ASIA (every Wed 7-8:30pm SGT): https://www.facebook.com/events/571492756800073/

AMERICAS (every Fri 8-9:30 pm EDT): https://www.facebook.com/events/2973423259381560/

*All events are open to everyone regardless of timezone

comment by Linch · 2020-04-27T19:44:50.142Z · score: 7 (4 votes) · EA(p) · GW(p)

Intro to Forecasting (EA San Francisco + Stanford EA discussion event)

cross-posted from Facebook. (I will check both this thread and the FB event for comments)

Date: 2020/04/29

Time: 19:00-21:00 (PDT)

Location: Zoom videoconferencing (recommend web portal)

You might have heard of forecasting by now. Many of the cool kids* are doing it, using fancy terms like "brier score," "metaculus", "log-odds", "calibration" and "modeling." You might have heard of superforecasters: savvy amateurs who make robustly better forecasts on geopolitical events than trained analysts at the CIA. What you might not have learned is that these skills are eminently trainable: In the original Good Judgement Project, researchers have found that a short 1-hour training course can robustly improve accuracy over the course of a year!

Next Wednesday, EA SF is collaborating with Stanford Effective Altruism to host an introductory event on forecasting. Together, we will practice (super)forecasting techniques: the skills and ways of thinking that allowed savvy amateurs to make better forecasts on geopolitical events than trained analysts at the CIA.


Here are some of the topics we'll try to cover and practice in small groups, time permitting:

Base Rates: Outside View vs. Inside View
Credence References: Thinking in Credible Intervals
Controlling for Scope: Consider the probability distribution across different outcomes than posed by the question, such as longer/shorter timeframes
Analytics: Fermizing, assessing signal vs. noise. Controlling for biases and fallacies
Comment: Making explicit rationales to prevent hindsight bias and share information
Compare: Explain your reasoning, benefit from viewpoint diversity, and accelerate learning
Update: Revise your forecast as new information comes in or you change your view

Structure: We'll meet together briefly to go over the details and then split into smaller groups with 3-6 group members each, including a group leader. Each group will be given a discussion sheet that they can copy and group leaders will be given an answer key.

We'll be using Zoom as our platform as that allows the most seamless split into smaller groups. For security reasons, we recommend using the Zoom Web portal over the Mac App.

We expect many of the attendees to be new to forecasting, but also several people who're very experienced forecasters and/or otherwise quite plugged in into the current state-of-the-art of forecasting. Depending on who shows up, it might also make sense to have a Q&A in addition to the small group discussions.

As this is a virtual event, all are welcome. However, we only have limited small group leader capacity, so in the (very fortunate!) world where many more people show up than we expect, groups may be asked to nominate their own group leaders instead of having an appointed one with prior experience managing EA discussions.

Hope to see you there!

*and some of the uncool kids

comment by JoshuaFox · 2020-04-12T11:25:44.712Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · EA(p) · GW(p)

There is a calendar of events here.

Does anyone know how I can add my event "Option Value in Effective Altruism: Worldwide Online Meetup" (April 13, 16:00 UTC) to this calendar?

comment by CharlotteSiegmann · 2020-04-12T13:09:16.698Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · EA(p) · GW(p)

Copying Catherine's message from the Group Organizers Slack:

comment by JoshuaFox · 2020-04-07T07:03:27.090Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · EA(p) · GW(p)

Option Value in Effective Altruism: Worldwide Online Meetup

April 13, at 16:00 UTC


comment by Linch · 2020-04-07T01:57:55.463Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · EA(p) · GW(p)

What's Up With the Windfall Clause? (online EA SF event)

cross-posted from Facebook. (I will check both this thread and the FB event for comments)

Date: 2020/04/08

Time: 19:00-21:00 (PDT)

How can we ensure that the gains from Transformative AI collectively benefit humanity, rather than just the lucky few? How can we incentivize innovation in AI in a way that's broadly positive for humanity? Other than alignment, what are distributive issues with the status quo in AI profits? What are practical issues with different distributive mechanisms?

In this talk, Cullen O'Keefe, Research Scientist at OpenAI and Research Affiliate at FHI, will argue for the "windfall clause": in short, that companies should donate excess windfall profits from Transformative AI for the common good.

You may be interested in reading his paper summarizing the core ideas [1], or his AMA on the EA Forum [2].

This will be EA: San Francisco's inaugural online event (and only our second general event).

We're still looking into different technological options for the best way to host this talk, but please have the Zoom App downloaded and create a Zoom account.

As this will be online, I see little reason to restrict this to people living within the physical Bay Area. Feel free to invite friends from all over the world (in a compatible time zone) if they wish to attend.

Tentative schedule:
Talk: 7:00-7:25
Q&A: 7:25-8:10
Structured Mingling: 8:10-9:00.
(Details of exact schedule TBD)

For the sake of everyone's mental health, we are banning all discussions of The Disease Which Must Not Be Named.

[1] https://arxiv.org/pdf/1912.11595.pdf
[2] https://forum.effectivealtruism.org/posts/9cx8TrLEooaw49cAr/i-m-cullen-o-keefe-a-policy-researcher-at-openai-ama [EA · GW]

comment by Linch · 2020-04-09T04:31:21.714Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · EA(p) · GW(p)

The talk is finished! You can view the video here.

comment by Linch · 2020-04-09T07:55:26.206Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · EA(p) · GW(p)

I was impressed by how high the turnout was. 34 concurrent on the livestream, 100+ views, and 29 people at the follow-up Q&A Zoom call afterwards.

comment by Linch · 2020-04-09T00:53:34.548Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · EA(p) · GW(p)

This is happening on Facebook in an hour! Please check the FB event for more details.

comment by Linch · 2020-04-07T02:10:38.449Z · score: 2 (1 votes) · EA(p) · GW(p)

We'd like to try using this forum to coalesce possible questions to ask Cullen. Please use this comment chain to ask and rank questions about the Windfall clause!!

(We will attempt, but not guarantee, asking him questions in the order of highest-upvoted questions in this thread that wasn't covered in the talk, as well as some live questions!)