Will there be significant changes to the world prior to some critical AI capability threshold being reached?
Will there be significant changes to the world prior to some critical AI capability threshold being reached? This is currently one of the questions I am most confused about (in particular, why MIRI/Eliezer hold the view that there won't be significant changes). I think Paul's position, that before AGI there will be almost-AGI, and therefore before FOOM there will be merely rapid change, is a reasonable default position to hold, and I still don't understand the MIRI position well enough to say there is a strong argument against this default position.
Eliezer: "And the relative rate of growth between AI capabilities and human capabilities, and the degree to which single investments in things like Tensor Processing Units or ResNet algorithms apply across a broad range of tasks, are both very relevant to that dispute." 
Rob Bensinger: 'But I also think it’s likely to be a discrete research target that doesn’t look like “a par-human surgeon, combined with a par-human chemist, combined with a par-human programmer, …” You just get all the capabilities at once, and on the path to hitting that threshold you might not get many useful precursor or spin-off technologies.' 
https://www.facebook.com/yudkowsky/posts/10154597918309228 -- this post seems to imply that Eliezer thinks this is a real possibility.