by Eliezer S. Yudkowsky
as what he sees are the various Shock levels
of possible future technology
. He describes it as a way to measure
people are comfortable
with, and after determining
that, what concepts they can be introduced
to without running into a point
where they become frightened
of the ideas. The basic
idea is that it's safe
to introduce someone to ideas that are one level above where they're familiar
- SL0: The legendary average person is comfortable with modern technology - not so much the frontiers of modern technology, but the technology used in everyday life. Most people, TV anchors, journalists, politicians.
- SL1: Virtual reality, living to be a hundred, "The Road Ahead", "To Renew America", "Future Shock", the frontiers of modern technology as seen by Wired magazine. Scientists, novelty-seekers, early-adopters, programmers, technophiles.
- SL2: Medical immortality, interplanetary exploration, major genetic engineering, and new ("alien") cultures. The average SF fan.
- SL3: Nanotechnology, human-equivalent AI, minor intelligence enhancement, uploading, total body revision, intergalactic exploration. Extropians and transhumanists.
- SL4: The Singularity, Jupiter Brains, Powers, complete mental revision, ultraintelligence, posthumanity, Alpha-Point computing, Apotheosis, the total evaporation of "life as we know it." Singularitarians and not much else.
To determine your level, consider the ideas presented in each group. If they seem inevitable, and give you no real worries about their development, then you've accepted that level. When you start considering the topics, and run into a strong, almost blind excitement, or strong "I don't want that to happen" fear, then that's above your current threshold.