Loren Merritt donations made

This is an online portal with information on donations that were announced publicly (or have been shared with permission) that were of interest to Vipul Naik. The git repository with the code for this portal, as well as all the underlying data, is available on GitHub. All payment amounts are in current United States dollars (USD). The repository of donations is being seeded with an initial collation by Issa Rice as well as continued contributions from him (see his commits and the contract work page listing all financially compensated contributions to the site) but all responsibility for errors and inaccuracies belongs to Vipul Naik. Current data is preliminary and has not been completely vetted and normalized; if sharing a link to this site or any page on this site, please include the caveat that the data is preliminary (if you want to share without including caveats, please check with Vipul Naik). We expect to have completed the first round of development by the end of December 2018. See the about page for more details.

Table of contents

Basic donor information

ItemValue
Country United States
Websitehttp://akuvian.org/
LessWrong usernamepengvado
GitHub usernamepengvado
Data entry method on Donations List WebsiteManual (no scripts used)

Miscellaneous notes: Loren Merritt is famous as the creator of x264 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X264 a free software library for encoding video streams into the H.264/MPEG-4 AVC format, which has been the main way he got wealthy (see http://www.x264.nl/developers/Dark_Shikari/loren.html and https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=320102 for some related discussion). See the comment http://lesswrong.com/lw/ftg/2012_winter_fundraiser_for_the_singularity/807l for the link between his LessWrong handle and his real name; also see https://mailman.videolan.org/pipermail/x264-devel/2008-March/004227.html for other evidence of his use of the pengvado handle

Donation amounts by cause area and year

If you hover over a cell for a given cause area and year, you will get a tooltip with the number of donees and the number of donations.

Note: Cause area classification used here may not match that used by donor for all cases.

Cause area Number of donations Number of donees Total 2017 2016 2014 2013 2012 2011
AI safety (filter this donor) 6 1 525,000.00 25,000.00 115,000.00 0.00 245,000.00 130,000.00 10,000.00
Rationality improvement (filter this donor) 1 1 40,000.00 0.00 0.00 40,000.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Total 7 2 565,000.00 25,000.00 115,000.00 40,000.00 245,000.00 130,000.00 10,000.00

Graph of spending by cause area and year (incremental, not cumulative)

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Graph of spending by cause area and year (cumulative)

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Donation amounts by subcause area and year

If you hover over a cell for a given subcause area and year, you will get a tooltip with the number of donees and the number of donations.

For the meaning of “classified” and “unclassified”, see the page clarifying this.

Subcause area Number of donations Number of donees Total 2017 2016 2014 2013 2012 2011
AI safety 6 1 525,000.00 25,000.00 115,000.00 0.00 245,000.00 130,000.00 10,000.00
Rationality improvement 1 1 40,000.00 0.00 0.00 40,000.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Classified total 7 2 565,000.00 25,000.00 115,000.00 40,000.00 245,000.00 130,000.00 10,000.00
Unclassified total 0 0 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Total 7 2 565,000.00 25,000.00 115,000.00 40,000.00 245,000.00 130,000.00 10,000.00

Graph of spending by subcause area and year (incremental, not cumulative)

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Graph of spending by subcause area and year (cumulative)

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Donation amounts by donee and year

Donee Cause area Metadata Total 2017 2016 2014 2013 2012 2011
Machine Intelligence Research Institute (filter this donor) AI safety FB Tw WP Site CN GS TW 525,000.00 25,000.00 115,000.00 0.00 245,000.00 130,000.00 10,000.00
Center for Applied Rationality (filter this donor) Rationality FB Tw WP Site TW 40,000.00 0.00 0.00 40,000.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Total -- -- 565,000.00 25,000.00 115,000.00 40,000.00 245,000.00 130,000.00 10,000.00

Graph of spending by donee and year (incremental, not cumulative)

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Graph of spending by donee and year (cumulative)

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Donation amounts by influencer and year

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Donation amounts by disclosures and year

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Donation amounts by country and year

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Full list of donations in reverse chronological order (7 donations)

DoneeAmount (current USD)Donation dateCause areaURLInfluencerNotes
Machine Intelligence Research Institute25,000.002017-10AI safetyhttp://web.archive.org/web/20171223071315/https://intelligence.org/topcontributors/-- Total amount donated by Loren Merritt to MIRI as of 2017-12-23 is $525,000. The amount listed as of October 2017 was http://web.archive.org/web/20171003083300/https://intelligence.org/topcontributors/ so the extra $25,000 was donated between those months.
Machine Intelligence Research Institute115,000.002016AI safetyhttp://web.archive.org/web/20170204024838/https://intelligence.org/topdonors/-- Total amount donated up to this point is listed as $500,000. The amount listed as of November 2016 at http://web.archive.org/web/20161118163935/https://intelligence.org/topdonors/ is 4385,000. The additional $115,000 was likely raised at the end of 2016.
Center for Applied Rationality40,000.002014-01-07Rationality improvementhttp://lesswrong.com/lw/jej/why_cfar/ab0o-- Donation is announced in response to the post http://lesswrong.com/lw/jej/why_cfar/ by Anna Salamon of CFAR, making the case for donating to it.
Machine Intelligence Research Institute245,000.002013AI safetyhttp://web.archive.org/web/20140403110808/http://intelligence.org/topdonors/-- Total amount donated up to this point is listed as $385,000. Of this, $140,000 is accounted for by explicitly disclosed donations; the remainder is approximately attributed to 2013.
Machine Intelligence Research Institute20,000.002012-12-07AI safetyhttp://lesswrong.com/lw/ftg/2012_winter_fundraiser_for_the_singularity/7zt4-- Donation is announced in response to the post http://lesswrong.com/lw/ftg/2012_winter_fundraiser_for_the_singularity/ for the MIRI 2012 winter fundraiser.
Machine Intelligence Research Institute110,000.002012AI safetyhttp://lesswrong.com/lw/ftg/2012_winter_fundraiser_for_the_singularity/7zt4-- Donation is announced in response to the post http://lesswrong.com/lw/ftg/2012_winter_fundraiser_for_the_singularity/ for the MIRI 2012 winter fundraiser.
Machine Intelligence Research Institute10,000.002011-08-25AI safetyhttp://lesswrong.com/lw/78s/help_fund_lukeprog_at_siai/4p1x-- Donation is announced in response to the post http://lesswrong.com/lw/78s/help_fund_lukeprog_at_siai/ by Eliezer Yudkowsky asking for help to fund Luke Muehlhauser at MIRI (then called SIAI, the Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence.

Similarity to other donors

The following table uses the Jaccard index and cosine similarity to compare the similarity of donors. We are showing the top 30 donors by the Jaccard index because we show up to 30 donors and show only donors with at least one donee in common.

Donor Number of distinct donees Number of donees in common (intersection) Union size Jaccard similarity Cosine similarity Weighted cosine similarity
Blake Borgeson 2 2 2 1 1 0.9847
Richard Schwall 2 2 2 1 1 0.9916
Adam Weissman 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Alan Chang 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Aleksei Riikonen 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Alex Edelman 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Alex Schell 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Alexei Andreev 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Andrew Hay 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Austin Peña 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Ben Hoskin 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Benjamin Goldhaber 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Berkeley Existential Risk Initiative 4 2 4 0.5 0.7071 0.2866
Brian Cartmell 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Bruno Parga 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Bryan Dana 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Buck Shlegeris 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Chris Haley 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Christian Calderon 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Cliff & Stephanie Hyra 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Daniel Nelson 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Daniel Ziegler 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Donald King 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Edwin Evans 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Emma Borhanian 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Eric Lin 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Eric Rogstad 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Ethan Dickinson 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Frank Adamek 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971
Gary Basin 1 1 2 0.5 0.7071 0.9971