Toronto Meetup, May 10th

by Spencer_Sleep1 min read9th May 20116 comments


Personal Blog

When: Tuesday, May 10th, 20:00

Where: The Bedford Academy, 36 Prince Arthur Avenue

Hi everyone,

The Toronto meetup group is having one of our bi-weekly meetings this Tuesday at the Bedford Academy. The reservation is under the name Spencer Sleep. I have requested a table upstairs, as it tends to be much quieter up there.  

Regulars take note: This meeting is on Tuesday, not Thursday.  This change is because Thursday night is a busy night for bars, so it tends be much louder than Tuesday nights.

Newcomers are, as always, extremely welcome.

The discussion topic for this meeting is the feasibility of nuclear power. If that is too abstract for you, then it is the feasibility of nuclear power as an energy source when compared to alternatives as they stand today, judged on the basis of economic and environmental effects and logistics (availability of fuel, creation of waste, etc...).  This discussion topic comes from a meeting a few weeks ago where we wanted to try applying rationality to "solve" (or at least gain a better understanding of) controversial problems, such as that of nuclear power.  Since these are such hot topics, discussions are usually very charged with emotions, and biases run rampant.  We wanted to see if we could make headway by approaching it from a rational standpoint. Five minutes into the discussion, we determined that we did not have enough facts and that all we were doing was quoting contradictory numbers at each other.  We determined to put it off for another day when we had had time to prepare.  That day is today (well, Tuesday).

Note: This discussion topic will probably not take up more than an hour of the meeting, so even if this topic does not particularly interest you please show up anyway, as there will be many other discussions throughout the night.

If you want to hear about upcoming LessWrong events in Toronto, or have ideas about how or when those events should be run, join the Toronto LessWrong Google Group!

See you Tuesday


6 comments, sorted by Highlighting new comments since Today at 12:17 PM
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You folks should take a look at this free online book if you haven't already.

Yes yes yes. That book is awesome and genuinely reads like it was written by someone with no agenda except "getting at the right answer".

Two caveats:

  1. It is UK focused. This is made very explicit, but it might introduce some anchoring bias - the UK is a very densely populated country which makes the constraints on its energy supply somewhat atypical

  2. The message is very much "here's the sort of calculations you should be doing, go and do them yourself" rather than "take my figures as gold"

[-][anonymous]10y 0

Was this supposed to go in the Climate change: existential risk? thread? I don't see any particular connection to Toronto...

I'm a long time reader and have been waiting for a meetup in a nearby city I can attend. Unfortunately I live in Mississauga, and while getting there is no problem, work seems to come awfully early the next day when I factor in the commute home.

So I think I'll miss out on this one. Perhaps if an earlier meeting time is possible in the future, I'll be there.

I can't wait!

I'd be interested in hearing how well this actually worked.

Reposting what I wrote on the Google group:

Just in case we need a second discussion topic, I have one which doesn't require any prior research: lukeprog's recent "Elephant and rider" posts:

And this is also relevant:

I'll print off a copy if I remember. I believe that these ideas are very important to improving ones own rationality so I really want to talk about them at the next opportunity.