If it's worth saying, but not worth its own post (even in Discussion), then it goes here.
Notes for future OT posters:
1. Please add the 'open_thread' tag.
2. Check if there is an active Open Thread before posting a new one. (Immediately before; refresh the list-of-threads page before posting.)
3. Open Threads should be posted in Discussion, and not Main.
4. Open Threads should start on Monday, and end on Sunday.
I'm in the process of reading Kuhn's "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions". It's interesting but it is quite dated. Is there a 21st cenutry book on the history and philosophy of science that you would recommend?
Excepts from ''Explaining and inducing savant skills: privileged access to lower level, less-processed information'' by Allan Snyder, available here... (read more)
I just (in, say, the last couple of days) got something like 50 downvotes, presumably all on old comments since I don't see any sign of a lot of downvotes on recent comments of mine.
This is the kind of thing that has got people banned in the past; if any moderator happens to be reading this and considers it worth investigating, I'd be interested to know the result.
I've contacted tech.
I made this joke site: https://flashcash.money
It's often rational to burn cash on positional goods like Rolexes and bottle service at clubs, but FlashCash.money takes that value proposition to the logical extreme.
What is a computation? Intuitively some (say binary) states of the physical world are changed, voltage gates switched, rocks moved around (https://xkcd.com/505/), whatever.
Now, in general if these physical changes were done with some intention like in my CPU or the guy moving the rocks in the xkcd comic, then I think of this as a computation, and consequentially I would care for example about if the computation I performed simulated a conscious entity.
However, surely my or my computer's intention can't be what makes the physical state changes count as a ... (read more)
Gene editing saves girl dying from leukaemia in world first
Acute lymphoblastic leukemia and other blood tumors in which B-cells become malignant are extremely well-suited to this approach. You can cook up a T-cell that will react against B-cell specific proteins, inject it, and it will sense all the B cells around it and grow up to large numbers and kill all the B-cells and B-cell derived tumor cells in the patient's body. You can live without B-cells (with a hit to immune system strength) and they have some very cell-specific proteins. Going after B-cell malignancies with modified immune cells has been successfully done before.
I am loving the new twist though - rather than going through the process of extracting the patient's own T-cells and modifying them, they took a T-cell line they already had and destroyed its ability to ever respond to anything but the targeted antigen, meaning that a tissue-compatibility mismatch was irrelevant because it would never go after any foreign things it encountered other than the one coded target. The cells were apparently also modded to be resistant to chemotherapy drugs. The same cell line could be used in multiple people - though I'm sure that if any of the patient's own immune system remained at all the foreign T cells would eventually be killed off rather than becoming a permanent part of the immune system as sometimes happens when the cells come from the patient themselves.
Zombie physics: 6 baffling results that just won't die... (read more)
Laszlo Babai (University of Chicago): Graph Isomorphism in Quasipolynomial Time (Combinatorics and TCS seminar)
G. Ph... (read more)
An unusually clear discussion of the failings of the p-values and what you can (or can not) expect from them. The author seems to have a slight allergy to the Bayesian approach though he freely acknowledges that what he is using is, in fact, the Bayesian approach :-/
What are time-efficient ways of finding people with similar interests and skills to cooperate with?
I have a foggy memory of someone here (I think it was gwern) linking to an article about simulation interface design. It built up examples based on a bird's eye view of a car steering down a road. I haven't been able to find it, anyone know a link to the article?
Bret Victor's "Up and Down the Ladder of Abstraction"?
Does anyone have any good recommended reading on being social? Stuff like understanding social situations and how to respond appriopriately. Understanding personality types and how to engage with them. How to make people like you can how to keep people's attention. I'd really love to learn these skills , as I feel I am deficient at them.
Posting here to avoid introducing an irrelevant aside on one of the main [ETA: Discussion-main, not Main-main] threads, regarding the "retrocausality" of Newcomb-like problems.
Causality is always bidirectional. It is information which only goes in one direction. Once you dissolve that distinction, the question is one of information, which doesn't need to involve any strange loops at all; the behavior of Newcomb-like problems isn't produced by your actions changing history, but by information about what your action will be changing the future, o... (read more)
It looks like letting math students flounder for a while before telling them how to solve a problem helps them learn.
Is Economics Research Replicable? Sixty Published Papers from Thirteen Journals Say “Usually Not” by Andrew C. Chang and Phillip Li... (read more)
Note that their implicit definition of "replicable" is very narrow --- under their procedure, one can fail to be "replicable" simply by failing to reply to an e-mail from the authors asking for code. This is somewhat of a word play, since typically "failure to replicate" means that one is unable to get the same results as the authors while following the same procedure. Based on their discussion at the end of section 3, it appears that (at most) 9 of the 30 "failed replications" are due to actually running the code and getting different results.
It is interesting to compare the Less Wrong and Wikipedia articles on Recursive self improvement: http://wiki.lesswrong.com/wiki/Recursive_self-improvement https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recursive_self-improvement I still find the anti-foom arguments based on diminishing returns in the Wikipedia article to be compelling. Has there been any progress on modelling recursively self improving systems systems beyond what we can find in the foom-debate?
I've recently started using RSS feeds. Does anyone have LW-related feeds they'd recommend? Or for that matter, anything they'd recommend following which doesn't have an RSS feed?
Here's my short list so far, in case anyone else is interested:
Less Wrong Discussion
Less Wrong Main (ie promoted)
Slate Star Codex
Center for the Study of Existential Risk
Future of Life Institute [they have a RSS button, but it appears to be broken. They just updated their webpage, so I'll subscribe once there's something to subscribe to.]
Global Priorities Project
Should the public trust climatologists in the global warming debate?
Will Augur be the first successful decentralised prediction market?
NASA Study: Mass Gains of Antarctic Ice Sheet Greater than Losses... (read more)
The amount lost in the Arctic is about a factor of 3 larger than the net gain in Antarctica, and West Antarctica as a subset of antarctica is losing ice on the net in a way that is likely to accelerate in the future. Also apparently Antarctica has been gaining ice on the net for 10,000 years according to the source, and it's a case of recent loss rate increases not yet balancing this normal gain rate.
Further quote from the article:
This is the most terrifying comic SMBC has made yet How much of a point does Zach have, here? Can this be the shape of the future?
If you had to select just 5 mutually exclusive and collectively exhaustive variables to predict the the outcome of something you have expert knowledge (relative to say...me) about:
what are the 5 things that best determine the outcome?
Please tell us about multiple things if you are an expert at multple things. No time for humility know, it is better that you are kind teacher than a modest mute.
If you can come up with a better way I could ask this, please point it out! It sounds clumsy, but the question has a rather technical ba... (read more)
Top 4 web resources about the application of machine learning to public health:
As taught coursework
As a field of research
As independent scientific movements
In one computationally intensive field of public health
Feel free to add any non significantly overlapping, high quality resources in the comments, or to comment otherwise.
This may be a silly question, if complex regional pain syndrome is 47 out of 50 on the McGill pain scale, where would 'torture' be?
Identifying cognitive distortions
Psychologists someone's hand out a worksheet with the names of cognitive distortions. Ie: mentalising. It is usually encumbrance upon psychiatric patients to pick up on trends for these distortions themselves from what their psychologists tells them.
For instance, my psychologists might intuit that something is paranoid while I don't. That certainly kills that one belief after a bit of reflection, but my mind remains generally predisposed to paranoid thinking in the next moments of conscious ideation too. They will never cat... (read more)
There are 4 computer memory designers. One is a major phone manufacturer, one is a major computer manufacturer and one is a major car manufacturer. The fourth, crucial, makes computer memory for their competitors. I reckon this is best if only example of a stable large scale unregulated efficiency monopoly.
I wish I was clever enough to understand computer memory, get in on the open hard ware movement and capitalise on Project Aras forthcoming release early next year! Imagine, an AppStore for hardware, sponsored by Google for android!
I'm looking for an academic/science/technology enthusiast to cofound my new website with me.
Website is already built and nearing launch. I am looking for someone who can serve as an adviser and contribute directly to site content (I will explain the content in more detail to serious candidates). This will require knowing a lot about science, and a lot about how scientists think. He/she needs to be interested in new technologies and current events. From international affairs, economic policy, politics and ethical issues to cryptocurrency, biotech, physics a... (read more)
I want to learn to play the Dataridoo. Is Swirl the right choice if I want to graduate into a career in machine learning, but failed at learning Python, and managed to learn Stata? Also I'm shit at concentrating, and it's the only learning platform that doesn't confuse me with all the features. I kid you not I took months to figure out how to use LessWrong. I may be stupid, but I am dedicated. Once I find the best platform for me, I'll stick to it. But good recommendations now may save me months later.
Pardon my candour, but if you are "shit at concentrating", are readily confused by things, and found Python too difficult to learn, then you might want to consider whether machine learning is a good choice of career.
(I gravely doubt that you are in fact stupid, and given sufficient dedication I expect you could do it, but it seems like a lot of pain. Are you sure it's worth it?)
That's because they are an exclusive high-IQ club to start with.
Take someone who scored in 300s on his SAT -- would you recommend him to try to become a mathematician?
No one has any idea since he lived before IQ tests.
That's like saying a basketball coach doesn't care about the player's height, he only cares how high can he jump.
Ramanujan was a Brahmin. "Peasant' isn't quite appropriate.
Sure, that's true.
And I agree. But consider the setup: we have a person who doesn't quite know what he wants to do and who has shown no signs of possessing any "supernatural" math abilities. Could he turn out to be another Groethendieck? Well, sure, it's possible, but we are talking about the base population rate here, the chances are, let's say, not very high.
Now, it so happens that most math professionals have high IQ. That's not a coincidence, of course -- if your brain is insufficiently weird to see math "directly", you have to rely on the same dimensions of performance (working memory, etc.) which are reflected in the IQ score.
Trying out a profession has costs, sometimes considerable. You can't try everything on the off chance that it might work out -- you want to focus on the areas where you expect to do well. And someone with an IQ of 130 has much, MUCH better chances of becoming a mathematician than someone with the IQ of 80.
So, apparently NLP is pseudoscience, and now I'm confused. Does anyone actually claim
If there are no claims to any of the above, what exactly was discredited?
Health is good. Intelligence is sometimes associated with health. Wikipedia has two articles on the relationship between intelligence and health. The other is here. So wouldn't you want to know more about your intelligence?
Clarity's index of sometimes subtle neurological conditions that impair cognitive functionl
Kleine–Levin syndrome... (read more)
i reckon the reason i have admired and.imitated entrepreneurship, innovation and initiative above their market value, social and financial, is that it seems to signal reaponsibility, in spite of circumstanes for which their solution may not be apparent for a particular problem. But there are a whole class of.other values and hehaviours that entail.reaponsibility and I reckon the quality of those particular aforementioned signals to imply responsibility has and is decaying as I mature. Duty, and consistency, are the traits a value them on par with now, things I had neglected before.