Jaan Tallinn

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Jaan Tallinn
Jaan Tallinn.jpg
Born (1972-02-14) 14 February 1972 (age 46)
Occupationprogrammer, investor, physicist

Jaan Tallinn (born 14 February 1972 in Tallinn[1]) is an Estonian programmer, investor, and physicist [2] who participated in the development of Skype[3] in 2002 and FastTrack/Kazaa, a file-sharing application, in 2000.[4]

Jaan Tallinn is partner and co-founder of the development company Bluemoon which created the game SkyRoads.[5] He graduated from the University of Tartu in 1996 with a BSc in Theoretical Physics with a thesis that considered travelling interstellar distances using warps in space-time.

Tallinn sits on the Board of Sponsors of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists and is a former member of the Estonian President's Academic Advisory Board.[6] He is also one of the founders of the Centre for the Study of Existential Risk,[7] and the Future of Life Institute,[8][9][10][11] and was[12] co-founder of the personalized medical research company MetaMed.[13]

Tallinn participates in the effective altruism movement and donated $604,500 to the effective altruism associated Machine Intelligence Research Institute since 2015.[14][15][16]

He strongly promotes the study of existential risk and has given numerous talks on this topic.[17] His main worries are related to artificial intelligence, unknowns coming from technological development, and biological risk.[18][19] He believes humanity is not spending enough resources on long-term planning and mitigating threats that could wipe us out as a species.[20]


  1. ^ "Jaan Tallinn, Curriculum Vitae". Tartu Ülikool Sihtasutus. May 2012. Archived from the original on 6 December 2013. Retrieved 6 September 2013.
  2. ^ "Jaan Tallinn at Ambient Sound Investments". University of Cambridge. Retrieved 30 October 2016.
  3. ^ "Creating global business model for knowledge-intensive SMES the small transition country cases" (PDF).
  4. ^ "Tech firms find home in revived Estonia". International Herald Tribune. 13 December 2005. Retrieved 2009-09-18.
  5. ^ "If It Works, You Can Break It". Forbes. 20 December 2004. Retrieved 2009-09-18.
  6. ^ "Office of the President press announcement". Archived from the original on 2011-05-14.
  7. ^ Lewsey, Fred (25 November 2012). "Humanity's last invention and our uncertain future". Research News. University of Cambridge. Retrieved 28 January 2013.
  8. ^ "Future of Life Institute".
  9. ^ "Elon Musk Donates $10M To Make Sure AI Doesn't Go The Way Of Skynet". Mashable. 2015. Retrieved 21 Jun 2015.
  10. ^ "Elon Musk spends $10 million to stop robot uprising (+video)". Christian Science Monitor. 2015. Retrieved 21 Jun 2015.
  11. ^ "Elon Musk: Future of Life Institute Artificial Intelligence Research Could be Crucial". Bostinno. Retrieved 5 Jun 2015.
  12. ^ Clarke, Liat (24 April 2015). "The solution to saving healthcare systems? New feedback loops". Wired.co.uk. Retrieved 24 May 2015. Tallinn learned the importance of feedback loops himself the hard way, after seeing the demise of one of his startups, medical consulting firm Metamed.
  13. ^ Weber, Harrison (1 March 2013). "Peter Thiel-backed MetaMed thinks you should have your own on-demand medical research team". TheNextWeb. Retrieved 4 April 2013.
  14. ^ "Machine Intelligence Research Institute".
  15. ^ "Jaan Tallinn - Effective Altruism". Effective Altruism. Retrieved 2017-07-03.
  16. ^ "Skype inventor Jaan Tallinn wants to use Bitcoin technology to save the world". The Telegraph. Retrieved 2017-07-03.
  17. ^ "Jaan Tallinn on the Intelligence Stairway".
  18. ^ "A Skype founder on biomonitors, existential risk and simulated realities". The Wall Street Journal. 31 May 2013. Retrieved 2014-05-02.
  19. ^ "Existential Risk: A Conversation with Jaan Tallinn". Edge Foundation, Inc. 16 April 2015.
  20. ^ "Skype co-founder Jaan Tallinn on surviving the rise of the machines". Marketplace. 26 December 2012. Retrieved 2014-05-02.

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