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Examples of Regulated Things

Published: 19 October, 2023; Last Updated: 19 October, 2023.

This page is in an early draft. It is very incomplete and may contain errors.

Governments regulate many things.


Some AI policy proposals involve regulating the hardware used to train and run AI models. To better understand how this could work, it might be useful to look at how other things have been regulated.

This page consists of a list of regulated things that might be relevant for thinking about how to regulate hardware.


The list below contains the following columns:

  • What: The thing that is being regulated.
  • Who: What level of government has passed and enforces the regulated.
  • How Much: Many regulations only apply if someone owns more than a certain amount of the regulated thing. X-ray machines are unusual in that the creation method for the x-rays is regulated, rather than the amount of x-rays produced.
  • Type: Some regulations put a limit on the maximum amount someone can own before more stringent regulations apply. For others, someone can buy more than that, but it requires a license or a prescription from someone with a license. Regulations can also require the owner to register any of the regulated thing.
  • Source: A link to further information.
What Who How Much Type Source
Acetone US 150 kg license
Natural uranium US 1.5 kg limit
Materials with uranium US 0.05% limit
Fireworks US 400 g limit
Distilling equipment US 1 gallon limit
Trash fires California 4' x 4' limit
Chickens San Francisco 4 limit
Guns US 0.5“ diameter limit
Metal foundries US 10,000 tons / year limit
Motor vehicles California any registration
Motor vehicles California 26,000 lb GVWR limit
Ibuprofen US 200 mg / tablet prescription
Drones US 0.55 lb registration
Pseudoephedrine US 7.5 grams / 30 days limit

Primary authors: Rick Korzekwa and Jeffrey Heninger.

responses_to_ai/examples_of_regulated_things.txt · Last modified: 2023/10/19 22:02 by jeffreyheninger