This now-ancient post by Alex Tabarrok on the virtues of direct instruction reminds me: we need more robots. I dream of the day when, as fightin' public intellectual Will Wilkinson once suggested to me, people will pay a premium for "organic" novels written by actual humans, sometime after superintelligent machines supplant human creators of literary fiction. That day is coming soon. I'd say give it a decade. My hope is that we'll soon have robot fan fiction that can, for example, tells me what happens after the extremely abrupt ending of American Pastoral. Seriously, what if all unsatisfactory endings could be supplemented by robot-produced B- level "sequels" offering plausible scenarios concerning your favorite characters?

That I'd consider this a very good thing should give you some indication of the extent of my philistinism.

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