Thanks for the explanation; I do support what SI is doing (researching problems around digital sentience as moral patients, which seems to be an important and neglected area), and your reasoning makes sense!
I think we’re more limited by the number of monitoring measurements we can take and our ability to deliver specific, measured intervention at specific places and times.
This seems a bit surprising to me, as currently we don’t even have a good understanding of biology/ecology in general, and of welfare biology in particular. (which means that we need intelligence to solve these)
So, did you mean that engineering capabilities (e.g. the minotoring measurements that you mentioned) are more of a bottleneck to WAW than theoretical understanding (into welfare biology) is? If yes, could you explain the reason?
One plausible reason I can think of: When developping WAW interventions, we could use a SpaceX-style approach, i.e. doing many small-scale experiments, iterating rapidly, and learn from tight feedback loops, in a trial-and-error manner. Is that what you were having in mind?
This is exactly the sort of work we do at Sentience Institute on moral circle expansion (mostly for farmed animals from 2016 to 2020, but since late 2020, most of our work has been directly on AI—and of course the intersections)
Sentience Institute has, in its research agenda, research projects about digital sentients (which presumably include certain possible forms of AI) as moral patients, but (please correct me if I’m wrong) in the “In-progress research projects” section there doesn’t seem to be anything substantial about the impact of AI (especially transformative AI) on animals?
Not sure what is meant by “donate to humans directly”?
Also I suggest not limiting yourself to these two categories, as there’re likely better areas to donate to in order to help advance the “AI for animals” direction (e.g. supporting individuals or orgs that are doing high-impact work in this specific direction (if there isn’t any currently, consider committing donations to future ones), or even better, starting a new initiative if you’re a good fit and have good ideas).