The free market doesn’t provide much incentive for companies to pursue not-soon-to-be-commercializable science. In academia, many of the benefits of market forces are lost – such as Darwinian competition for best practices and the ability of start-ups to “disrupt” the establishment. A third strategy would be for governments to create large prizes for scientific advancements, spurring companies to pursue scientific research.
Many people are willing to take on large risks in business, yet almost no one donates to charity in this manner. If anything, we should be even riskier with our donations. Charities that focus on existential risks – like the threat of extinction from human level artificial intelligence – appear to be particularly good opportunities for doing a lot of good.
Computers have seen exponential gains since 1890, and will continue to do so for decades. We use computers to build the next generation of computers, and this positive feedback loop allows for persistent growth. Demand for further improvements is kept high by new applications on the horizon.
Many different countries have attempted to copy Silicon Valley (and failed). These attempts usually consists of incentivizing entrepreneurship and related activities. Silicon Valley achieved its prominence after billions of dollars invested in military technologies was cut, and many well-connected engineers became unemployed in the same area.
Future AR/VR technology could enable individuals to choose their realities. In the face of automation, meaningless jobs within these realities will likely emerge. Basic Income would ensure these jobs are not exploitative.