2.1.1 What is the key to pursuing NSG?The technique of taking the maximum possible number of strategic steps. The acronym mss stands for maximum strategic stepping
2.1.2 What is a strategic step?The act of shifting one's thoughts from specific goals to more general ones that they depend on.
2.1.3 How does one take a strategic step to pursue science?The naive approach is to try to contribute by making scientific progress, such as Einstein did. The first problem with this is that by picking a specialty, one ignores the overall strategy for achieving progress. There may be more benefit to evaluating which areas in science should be emphasized than risking that one picks an area that will lead to no relevant progress or an area that is rendered obsolete by new technology.
Based on this strategic step, one might draw the conclusion that effort is better invested in being a person who tries to influence which areas in science are pursued.
2.1.4 What is the next strategic step after that?The next consideration might be that it may be more fruitful to ensure that other scientists will take the strategic step and think about overall strategy, rather than just thinking about it oneself. Thus one might choose to become someone who tries to ensure that there will always be enough of us who are concerned with choosing the best areas in science to pursue.
2.1.5 However, the only way to make scientific advances is to actually take action rather than endlessly strategizing, trying to take more and more strategic steps. How will actual scientific progress ever happen?It could easily take thousands of years before we reach a point where we run out of strategic actions to take and actually begin specific scientific research purely for the sake of knowledge.
Yet only the probability that NSG will be attained is of relevance. Impatience or the desire to see scientific advances with one's own eyes limits the effectiveness of the overall strategy.
2.1.6 Is there any example of a scientist in the present or past who has actually practiced mss?The very fact that a person is a scientist already proves that he is not taking the maximum number of strategic steps.
2.1.7 How do all these scientists justify what they're doing?They justify their actions as something they simply want to do for personal gratification.
2.1.8 How else?Often, they justify their actions with the fact-based argument that if they don't do what they do (clone animals, create the atomic bomb, etc.), someone else will do it anyway.
2.1.9 For comparison, what is the decision-based way of thinking here?In decision-based thought, the fact that someone else will do it anyway means that we don't have to worry about it. The purpose of strategic steps is to ensure that things happen that are not going to happen anyway.
We know we are capable of scientific achievements. We only need to ensure that they are pursued with the right strategy.
Clearly, blindly charging ahead (i.e. everyone pursuing their own trivial interests and wants) as our world is doing now involves no strategy whatsoever.
2.1.10 What types of things would general strategists do for thousands of years before ever actually pursuing knowledge for its own sake?The types of projects that we will actually undertake involve designing an optimal society, with an optimal way of raising children, competing against the existing society to eventually surpass it and render it powerless, optimally redesigning language and social behavior, and so on.