(The HPMOR discussion thread after this one is here.)
This is a new thread to discuss Eliezer Yudkowsky's Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality and anything related to it. There haven't been any chapters recently, but it looks like there are a bunch in the pipeline and the old thread is nearing 700 comments. The latest chapter as of 7th March 2012 is Ch. 77.
There is now a site dedicated to the story at hpmor.com, which is now the place to go to find the authors notes and all sorts of other goodies. AdeleneDawner has kept an archive of Author's Notes.
The first 5 discussion threads are on the main page under the harry_potter tag. Threads 6 and on (including this one) are in the discussion section using its separate tag system. Also: one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine.
As a reminder, it's often useful to start your comment by indicating which chapter you are commenting on.
Spoiler Warning: this thread is full of spoilers. With few exceptions, spoilers for MOR and canon are fair game to post, without warning or rot13. More specifically:
You do not need to rot13 anything about HP:MoR or the original Harry Potter series unless you are posting insider information from Eliezer Yudkowsky which is not supposed to be publicly available (which includes public statements by Eliezer that have been retracted).
If there is evidence for X in MOR and/or canon then it's fine to post about X without rot13, even if you also have heard privately from Eliezer that X is true. But you should not post that "Eliezer said X is true" unless you use rot13.
I see also that the theories about Santa Claus's identity are equally as varied as the ones about Mr. Hat & Cloak. My take on this is similar to my take on H&C: we're meant to understand that Santa Claus is simply Dumbledore.
The only person we know for whom all the above facts are true is Dumbledore.
However, the "S" who left notes for Hermione is not Santa Claus. It's Severus Snape, who we know for a fact was the mysterious person helping SPHEW in its mission. The two signatures happen ... (read more)
I congratulate you on your 100% accurate pre-hoc explanation.
Nothing says the Portkey goes where it says it does. It could be a reasonably good test of "Harry Potter is desperately seeking a way out" if one just monitored his arrival in the destination.
Ch 78 You know, of all the things in the chapter, the law of Potion-Making seems the most important, by far - if I understand it correctly, it has staggering implications.
It's clear that you can extract more than purely physical processes from ingredients - since we have potions that bestow even entirely abstract concepts like luck(and canon!Snape claimed to be capable of brewing fame and glory, I'm unsure if MoR!Snape claimed the same).
So, could you, say, take a CD with some software on it and use it as a Potions ingredient in order to extract the mental work that went into programming that software, creating a Potion of Excellent Programming or something? Or, even better - could you take a copy of some brilliant scientific research paper, extract the brilliant scientific genius out of it and use the resulting Potion in order to create an even more brilliant scientific breakthrough? That's godhood in one shot right there.
I also have to wonder how Potion-Making interacts with the Mind Projection Fallacy. If you use a video game as an ingredient, can you create a Potion of Fun out of the video game or no? Fun isn't an inherent property of video games, it's in the minds of the players.
Might explain all those Nazi book-burnings. Grindelwald's human allies weren't just providing human sacrifices.
My intuition, my sense of fairness, says that you can't get back the work required to create information without sacrificing an appreciable fraction of the number of extant copies of that information.
I would guess that Magic and the Mind Projection Fallacy are sittin' in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G.
You can make copies of books and of software CDs very cheaply. Given a law of conservation, it can't be the case that destroying (sacrificing) a cheap copy would gain you powerful results, or else you could generate infinite resources very quickly (and wizards would realize this).
Maybe destroying the last extant copy of a software would achieve the effect. One wonders what great magic was fueled by the burning of the Library of Alexandria.
If this were the case, could Hermione sacrifice the paper marked 42 for a Potion of Humanism?
Or if Harry wrote down his thesis on Partial Transfiguration, Hermione could make a potion from that (without reading it), and write down whatever discovery she made under the influence of the Breaking the Laws of Magic Potion, which Harry could then use to make a potion...
Another thought: write down a description of a complex magical principle that you understand, but that the interdict of merlin would prevent someone else who was reading it from understanding. Use the parchment you wrote on as an ingredient in a potion to make a potion with the mental work needed to discover/comprehend that principle.
Poof, Interdict of Merlin loses its teeth entirely. :)
Another thought that occurred to me: Felix Felicis. No wonder it's hard to brew. Only way you could brew it is if you literally got lucky in the process of brewing it, by chance, so that you can take that "chance" and put it into the potion.
(hrm... might be able to automate the process of making Felix: Have a machine that keeps mixing the ingredients many times in parallel, ie, many "potential potions", and in the process does something like for each potential potion, has a coin (or some random bit source which can then be physically placed in the potion) which it flips a 100 times. It also tracks the results, and when one of the coins comes up all heads, it drops it into the candidate potion then calls up the wizard to complete the potion.)
Oh, and MoR!Snape did claim you could b... (read more)
Hee hee. But no, I didn't mean a "potion of cleverness", I simply mean "be clever and invent a potion. Then use that potion as an ingredient to place the quality of the mental work of inventing a potion into a potion... then use that potion as an ingredient, etc.."
And actually, we know Harry meant to investigate mental magic, but we're not sure if he ever got around to it. (And, of course, there is Rowena's Diadem, which would seem to be an intelligence augmentation device. If that's in MoR, Harry's got to do something with it at some point. (But then, harry hasn't yet really jumped onto the existence of the Philosopher's Stone, so... well, I guess everyone here's already waiting for when he notices that and Epic Rages at the wizarding world along the lines of "you mean you already know how... you... ARGH!")
This thread is a little silly, even by local standards. First of all, the fact that a potion can be no stronger than its ingredients doesn't imply that a potion will always be as strong as its ingredients -- there are probably all kinds of other restrictions on what can be effectively brewed. By way of analogy, most Volvo engines don't run at Carnot efficiencies and most split pea soups don't run at more than 0.01 efficiency.
Second, all of the canon/fanon magical ingredients are non-copiable...a feather or a squished animal is not like a CD or a video game or a piece of parchment. Perhaps you could use the original of a piece of parchment if you didn't keep a spare copy, but EV drops lots of clues -- potion conservation was apparently designed by someone who thought the universe was fair, potion brewing is a substitute for a small, safe sacrifice, etc. -- everyone who's trying to figure out how to make a potion out of costless intellectual property is playing a different game than the one Harry's playing.
Third, advanced electronics tend to malfunction in proximity to strong magical auras -- so far the most advanced Muggle artifact that's been successfully used to interact with wiza... (read more)
Just because every potion in the two textbooks Harry looked at involved magical ingredients doesn't mean all potions require a magical ingredient. As I read it, Harry found the potion he used in a more obscure book suggested by Prof. McGonnagal or Flitwick, probably something like a wilderness survival guide. Converting acorns into a beacon would be pretty helpful for getting found by search parties.
It's not just about him not bothering to check whether he had a visa to Fuyuki city.
It's about him always having claimed to be a Slytherin.
Despite actually being... a Ravenclaw?
That doesn't sound like the kind of claim you could get away with it, and Quirrell should know that, but he still makes it, and... gets away with it?
Doesn't any current Hogwarts student have parents/relatives/family friends who knew Quirrell from his time back at school?
And it's blindingly, blitheringly obvious by this point that Quirrell is H&C. Too obvious.
Why would Quirrell orchestrate this in a way that ends in him being interrogated by the DMLE? Compare with his attempted Dementation of Harry.
In fact, the same thing would apply even if he weren't H&C. I'd expect him to have come up with a better way of handling it. One with more plausible deniability.
Conclusion: Quirrell planned to be interrogated by the DMLE. Quirrell planned to have his cover blown. Why? I haven't the slightest idea.
I still don't know what to make of the Ravenclaw thing, though.
Edit: Just checked to see if Quirrell had actually claimed to be in Slytherin instead of just implying it. Yes, he had.... (read more)
Speculation on the Slytherin/Ravenclaw issue: Quirrell is a double impostor. He's Voldemort possessing a Slytherin (name unknown) and pretending to be that Slytherin pretending to be a Ravenclaw named Quirinus Quirrell. Dumbledore knows about one level of the masquerade, and accepts the explanation that the Slytherin of unknown name is a private person. Quirinus Quirrell may be an entirely constructed identity, although that would make it less likely for him to have failed to remember some of the details of it under interrogation.
Voldemort himself seems like a pretty artificial persona. I think it's better to think of both Voldemort and Quirrell as Riddle's inventions, not directly related to one another.
Thanks, Eliezer, for unpausing one of my substrates!
Minor typo at the end of 78, repeated at the beginning of 79:
Actual speculation: what did Dumbledore know or suspect when he hired Quirrell?
What exactly was Dumbledore aware of? Merely that 'Quirrell' may have travelled without a visa (I guess this is illegal), or that he was an impostor? If the latter, why would Dumbledore hire him?
But if Dumbledore wasn't aware that Quirrell is an impostor, then Quirrell has made at least one foolish slip. During the interrogation, Scrimgeour says
But way back in Chapter 16, Quirrell says
My reading of the visa thing was that the Auror made it up on the spot to confirm that Quirrell had no idea of what trips he had taken in the past, and is therefore an impostor. Although I don't understand why Quirrell, if impersonating someone, would fail to look up these simple facts.
I believe Dumbledore would have been a professor of the real Quirrell, so he must know it's an imposter he's hired. I suspect Quirrell fed him some convincing lie or another about his true identity.
I brought the same thing up here.
I doubt Eliezer would forget that the major spokesperson of Slytherin in his fic is... well, Slytherin.
There's something else going on here.
I found stuff about the "Centre for Modern Rationality" hiding on hpmor.org!
I figure being referenced in the author's notes is enough to justify cross posting. I guess I'll find out if that's the case. (In the choice between not posting and posting without updating speculation, I decided to rationalize my sloth with a false dichotomy, maybe.)
Chapter 14: The Unknown and the Unknowable
HJPEV tells McGonagall about the message for Slytherin's Heir, refuses point-based reward, receives Time Turner, freaks the fuck out about receiving a time machine to treat his sleep disorder, has another 'you turned into a cat' moment, receives invisibility cloak from unknown person, learns what getting lost in Hogwarts entails, pranks himself, learns "There was something wrong with Harry Potter."
Chapter 21: Rationalization
Hermione deludes herself about why she likes beating HJPEV, chooses love, displays knowledge of Planning Fallacy, claims her prize; HJPEV creeps it up with Draco, claims Hermione as his own, traps Draco with promises of power, mentions that Draco should test the strength of muggleborn magic personally, agrees that human sacrifice is easier than changing his mind, establishes tradition of secrecy in the magical sciences, establishes ... (read more)
Update March 12: He's reading HPMoR, thanks presumably to the 7+ fan reviews from LWers, tvtropers, and whatever you call an xkcd fan. Still no fan reviews for Luminosity or Hamlet and the Philosopher's Stone.
Damien Walter reviews sci-fi and fantasy for The Guardian. He's looking for weird, self-published online fiction to read over the next month, and he'll review the best ones he finds. He's just asked people to recommend stories in the comments to his latest article. If you want to see Methods of Rationality, Luminosity, or my Hamlet and the Philosopher's Stone reviewed in a respected newspaper (there is precedent!), please consider heading over there and posting a short review (one link per comment, you can comment more than once). Each of the three is a hard sell even by online fantasy standards, and I imagine it would help if a disinterested party vouched for them.
Jumping in time just 6 hours back indicates to me that in the computer that is simulating MoR universe data is kept with 6-hours long cache.
As to Atlantis - they found a way to get out of the box - one level up, and they've left some cheat-codes for people that are still in this simulation. That also explains why some very important figures (like Dumbledore) think MoR runs on stories - somebody outside of simulation changes the simulation accordingnly. Maybe this simulation purpose is to make the best stories?
Also explains why prophecy works for more than 6 hours into the future - because simulation has some invariants, that make for best stories, and seers can well, "see" them, but only for very important events, and only guess ral meaning of these predictions. Hence mysterious prophecies.
What it doesn't explain - why cheat codes are in latinised English.
Simplest isn't quite as important as easiest (or most probable in terms of how reality fluid flows in a loop until it forms a stable equilibrium). The latter of course encompasses the former. In this case not only is it simple (not requiring many ontological loops) it is utterly trivial given the psychology of Harry. It only has to amplify Harry's paranoia only slightly to make him pull a reaction like that. And, in fact, given that Harry hadn't put any effort into even considering risks before doing something so extreme some reaction from him that is not the brute-forced-decryption result isn't unreasonable - so could have even happened without much consistency pressure beyond a single iteration required.
If Harry were a bit more stable and had better judgement in assessing safety he would probably have taken his time when replying and written something like "Don't be a reckless fool! Forcing black swans much?" As it happens t... (read more)
(EDIT: This theory was disproven in Chap. 79)
I think Hat and Cloak is Lucius Malfoy. First piece of evidence: timing of his first appearance.
Chapter 34: Harry says "Maybe I'll just do what Draco tried with Zabini, and write a letter to Lucius Malfoy and see what he thinks about that."
Chapter 35: Hat and Cloak appears on-screen for the first time, to talk to Zabini.
Second piece of evidence: He says "Lucius Malfoy has taken notice of you, Hermione."
Like, maybe just a sentence at the bottom saying "we promise to only use your email address to send you HPMOR notifications, and we promise never to share your email address with a third party"?
It's not that I don't trust you guys (and in fact I have already signed up) but I like to check on these things.
Hat-and-Cloak is Voldemort but not Quirrell. When in Quirrell, Voldemort has a whole (probably quite powerful!) brain to run his computation on. Outside of Quirrell, he relies only on what computation he can do purely as a 'ghost', or as magic, or whatever. Hat-and-Cloak is thusly disguised because Voldemort lacks a body. Or maybe Voldemort possesses someone else, who isn't as smart as Quirrell, and is proportionally dumber and more prone to mistakes. Quirrell is zombie while Voldemort's away because Voldemort set it up that way. Don't want your robot walking away without you.
Part of the groundhog-day attack involved setting up a trigger in Hermione, that when she can attack Malfoy, she should try to kill him. This explains her behaviour in the battle, and her apparent behaviour in the duel.
Hat-and-Cloak is a player in this story. Players in this story are clever and powerful. A sensible way of resolving this apparent contradiction is to postulate some form of disability or restriction applying to Hat-and-Cloak. Then all you need is Conservation of Characters.
It would simply be bad writing to set up a mysterious and malevolent figure like Hat and Cloak and then reveal him as one of the story's established villains. It's redundant, a wasted move, to reveal that the villain was secretly a villain. It drains tension from the story to reveal that the heroes were only facing one opponent, not two. I would rule out the possibility just by assuming a competent author.
A point in favor of Hat and Cloak being Grindelwald: the playing card he chose to represent Dumbledore was the King of Hearts. ♥
If Harry does not manage to find the real culprit, then how does he save Hermione from having her wand broken?
Breakout/Direct Attack on the Wizengamot / Malfoy Manor
Transfigure a one-atom line of antimatter through the earth's crust all the way to the Wizengamot or Malfoy Manor, and then a small bubble there. His wand is then touching the item to be transformed, and it will work.
Go to Azkaban and round up a few hundred dementors.
Bringing Hermione under the aegis of a noble house
Ten points to Slytherin for creativity. Minus ten bajillion points for holy shit, are you suicidal?!
As much as I'd love it, there's no chance of a trial by combat. "If we did it your way, Kingslayer, you'd win. We're not doing it your way."
Eliezer suggests re-reading 14, 21, 26, 35, 43-47, 56-57, 63, 66, 73-77, chapters
What're the possible clues embedded in these chapters?
It seems that the popular opinion around here is that Mr. Hat & Cloak is someone, anyone, other than Quirrellmort. I think this is a case of the same kind of thinking that led people to wonder whether Quirrell was Voldemort a lot longer than Eliezer intended.
I think Eliezer probably meant us to know that Quirrell was H&C the very first time he appeared. Quirrell follows after Zabini when he leaves Harry; Zabini says that Quirrell reacted exactly as H&C told him he would. He knew how Quirrell would react because he is Quirrell, and he told Zabini to do what he did specifically so Harry, who Quirrell knew would be around after the ceremony, could hear it and have another reason to distrust Dumbledore.
Eliezer has already dealt with this once. Everyone suppressed their own knowledge of canon and faculties of logic even in the face of nigh-incontrovertible evidence that Quirrell was Voldemort. He expressed his confusion at this in the author's notes, and I believe he vowed to make his blatant hints more blatant in the future.
I think Quirrell being H&C is even more blatant than Quirrellmort was, and here we are doing the exact same thing. We do it because we love the stor... (read more)
Ha! Or maybe Eliezer has been rolling his eyes at us (or, rather, y'all), and gave us a blatant hint with the contrast of competent Quirrell interrogating sneaky Snape and less experienced H&C working on naive Hermione. I think you're just clinging to your one beautiful idea, instead of examining other possibilities - like, say, H&C is taking instructions from Quirrell, maybe?
See? Two can play that game.
Somewhere in the old threads I think, but I'm in a rush and can't look it up right now. Quick points:
All plausibly deniable, and exactly Quirrell's style.
Am I the only one that's worried about Trelawney's prophecy? My vague recollection is that she's a joke of a diviner, but when you get right down to it, the fact that she predicted the same thing for each student in the class isn't such a huge likelihood burden if you consider that they are not necessarily independent events. That is to say, she may well be predicting the death of someone all the students know. Which would suggest a tragic ending to this story, probably, unless it's someone all the students Know-Who.
Or she's predicting a very imminent war.
If that's not true, then all I can say is "I am confused".
The strongest evidence that H&C is not Quirrell seems to me to be how much more amateurish he is at manipulating people than Quirrell is. I don't believe it would have taken Quirrell dozens of iterations to realize he ought to change his appearance. It probably wouldn't have taken him one.
So, possible Wild Guess, but has enough reinforcement that I'm going to throw it out there.
Right now, it seems like Eliezer is pushing to the trial. The chapter implies that Harry has done nothing else of note before Hermione's trial, meaning he will have limited ability to defend her. Without any sort of evidence to raise reasonable doubt, he'd basically have to manipulate the Wizengamot.
... Which, while beyond Harry's ability, is not beyond others. In particular: Quirrellmort.
If Quirrell manages to get Hermione acquitted...
1) Quirrell earns lots of Harry points. Regains trust after the Azkaban semi-fiasco.
2) Quirrell emphasizes his role as Harry's mentor and protector when even Dumbledore is helpless.
3) Meanwhile, this whole fiasco has convinced Harry even more that the wizarding society has issues.
4) Hermione is reinstated as an ally of Harry. If Quirrellmort's goal is to strengthen Harry, this is also a plus.
5) Draco is now a victim of a plan, and earns pity, not respect, destabilizing Lucius' power base.
If, simultaneously, Quirrell were to keep Lucius from undoing Harry's turning...
1) Again, adds another ally, Harry points, etc.
And if both... then we have two heroes of Slytherin and of Ravenclaw who survived an evil plot, and may well garner sympathy for that plot. And remember, Quirrell promised to make Slytherin and Ravenclaw simultaneously win the House Cup...
Chapter 25, Fred and George talking about the Marauder's Map, which is supposed to show all people in Hogwarts by name:
The intermittent one is probably Quirrell, going in and out of zombie mode. But what could be visibly wrong with the other one? My theory is that, unlike all the other dots on the Marauder's Map, one of them doesn't have a name. Who could that be?
I hypothesize that this is Mr. Hat and Cloak. That would mean it's not Quirrell and not anyone the Weasleys would pay much attention to, either. The map must get the names it displays from somewhere, and its reliability in doing so suggests that it gets them from people's minds. My hypothesis is that to appear on the map without a name, you'd have to (a) not be known by name and present appearance to anyone whose mind the map can read, and (b) be an occlumens.
Everyone seems to be holding the idiot ball with regards sending Snape to check Hermoine's room - this makes me suspect Dumbledore was behind the escalation.
Is Harry's guess at the twins' prank on Rita the correct one, and by corollary, are we supposed to believe that Quirrelmort couldn't come up with a hypothesis that basic, and/or that it had been that easy for the twins to successfully brainwash an adult witch? (And on a meta level: was it worth it to make such a hubbub with such a supremely, well, boring answer?)
The twins didn't brainwash Rita, they paid somebody to do it for them.
An important hint: "Obliviation cannot be detected by any known means, but only a Professor could have cast that spell upon a student without alarm from the Hogwarts wards."
This means no Lucius, no Sirius, no Lupin, etc.
Presuming this all does lead up to a trial, I look forward to Harry's reaction to the Magical Justice System.
"Hasn't it ever occurred to anyone to have a suspect's guilt decided by an unbiased panel of judges?!"
Yes, it is.
Either that or Eliezer anticipated this train of thought (not unlikely) and is playing at the second level (slightly unlikely). Multiplying that out, the probability is miniscule.
If Eliezer updates on the eve of the SAT, I'm going to track him down and read Vogon Poetry at him.
Will you do that before or after taking the SATs?
Wow, which communities did you previously hang out in?
I'm a reader who would not be directly affected by the timing relative to the SAT, and I say, please don't stick to the earlier date on my account. I would feel bad suspecting that other readers, who are taking the SAT, were harmed for my pleasure.
Don't know if I am a representative reader, though.
Harry and co. have one untapped potential ally: Lucius Malfoy. If they gave him all their clues, he may be convinced, just as they have been. And he has a powerful motive to find out who really tried to kill his son, even if he goes through with the trial against Hermione to avoid losing face.
The problem is how to approach him. He would not trust Dumbledore (his political enemy), Harry (he believes he is Voldemort and will soon hate him for 'turning' Draco), or Snape or Minerva (Dumbledore's agents).
I nominate Quirrel (to be sent by Harry) - known (or at least publicly displaying himself to be) free of Dumbledore's influence, a powerful Slytherin, and the one who actually saved Draco's life. Lucius would listen to him. Whether Quirrel would want to cooperate is another matter, but he should have some difficulty saying no to Harry and Dumbledore at once.
For Lucius to trust them, some of them might have to volunteer to testify in front of him under Veritaserum that they really believe the theory that Hermione didn't do it. Dumbledore is a known Occlumens, Snape and Quirrel would at least be suspected of being such, Harry told Draco he is so now Lucius knows as well. A weaker character like Minerva would be useless because Lucius could easily believe Dumbledore misled her. This is a problem...
Harry already has (he would think) an ultimate lever: The breakout from Azkaban. If he so wished, he could inform Dumbledore and the DMLE and bring all the wrath of Britain down on Quirrell. It would mean incredible costs for Harry, but he could do it. Although, my mental model of Harry says that he would never actually do that.
Even as an occlumens, Harry could prove he and Quirrell did it. Harry has knowledge of Azkaban that no 10 year old should know. He can communicate with dementors to identify himself. He could recreate the rocket he used. Dumbledore can identify his patronus, etc. He's also got a good chance of getting off without many repercussions due to being a minor under someone else's influence and being the boy-who-lived.
Now, Harry doesn't seem like the trust authority like that, but he could pull it off. Heck, even if Quirrell wouldn't agree to help Harry, Harry could probably just lie and say Quirrell planned this against Hermoine and get this crime pinned on Quirrel if he really wanted to. I don't think Harry would actually do this, but it's a possibility. Harry has an untapped resource to save her that nobody knows about (Knowledge of the Azkaban heist), but he either wouldn't think of it or he'd consider it not worth it.
Possible reference for the Chapter 78 title:
Taboo Trade-Offs, Relational Framing, and the Acceptability of Exchanges A. Peter McGraw University of Colorado, Boulder Philip E. Tetlock University of California, Berkeley
If this is a murder-mystery arc, then Quirrell is the obligatory Red Herring. He had motive, means and opportunity, and all three were revealed in the first part of 6-part arc. The laws of fiction demand it not be this easy.
Yes, that could be exactly what Eliezer wants us to think, but in the end I think Quirrell being responsible would just be too normal, even if suspicion is temporarily diverted from him by making him a false red herring.
I think we're supposed to be able to figure this one out. My mental model of Eliezer says he thinks he's given us more than enough hints, and we have a week to wait despite it being a short, high tension chapter. He makes a big deal out of how Harry only has thirty hours, which isn't enough; he gives us a week, and a lot of information Harry doesn't have.
Who benefits from isolating Harry from both of his friends, and/or making him do something stupid to protect Hermione in front of the most powerful people in the Wizarding World?
Evidence again... (read more)
I suppose it is for attempted murder, but I can't imagine it being normal procedure for three Aurors and the Headmaster to arrest a student.
My prediction: The sequence of events leading up to Hermione's arrest will not be predicted, because we don't have enough information currently to do so.
Well, I don't think it'll come completely out of the blue either, but I don't think predictions are possible at this time. (Should've clarified). I'm sure it'll all make total and perfect sense... In a few chapters.
By the way, EY, if you're reading this: for whatever it's worth, your writing is amazing, and stuff like the theory of potion making and then using acorns to make bright light is one of the best things I've read. Thanks for being awesome
Oh, he's reading this all right. The only question is in what manner he is laughing at us.
Nobody has proposed yet that H&C #2 = Snape. The evidence for this hypothesis is that Snape's helping of SPHEW caused a serious escelation of conflict (with Hermoine Granger at the center), and whoever primed Hermoine to attack Draco with the Groundhog Day Attack got her to continue the escelation.
Though I don't know what goal this subgoal would serve...
LATIN REQUEST: I need a spell that Dumbledore uses to summon the Sorting Hat. So far, Google Translate on "Attend, Sorter!" got me "Adtendite Ordinarium!" but I'll take other appropriate phrases if they've got better translations.
Premise: I've studied latin for about 5 years, so I'm not going to use gTranslate for Latin :)
my dictionary sounds better for this scope.
The verb prodeo [pro-eo] is the best I could think.
the particle pro- means something like in front of, even between (me) and something, or near (me): this last one is peculiar and happens only sometimes.
eo is the most common and even one of the ancient verbs (that's why is defective/irregular) that means simply go.
So when Cicero (Br. 39) said :
he probably meant something like
come out from dark in the light.
Other times is used, like in Caesar (Bg):
that should sound like
come out and go to the battle.
(If you need for other occasion for a "incantation" in a more militar situation , a good one could be subject in ablative case+ proelium proditu (prò-e-li-um prò-di-tu), but that's another topic :) )
Even flowers prodent and in a figurative way, even
tears of joy appeared/came out of (him)
but this sense doesn't matter that much for our problem, i guess.
Since you don't use "Hat" for the Sorting... (read more)
Pervenit Judex translates to "Here Comes the Judge".
...that is oddly appropriate.
(Can't find a good place to insert my entire current edifice of theory elsewhere, so I'll put it as a top level comment.)
Quirrell is Voldemort is Mr. Hat and Cloak. Quirrell's ultimate goal is driving Harry permanently into his Dark Side, so as to be another Voldemort, either to rule alongside the real Voldie or to be led by the real Voldie.
Quirrell's first attempt at driving Harry over to his Dark Side was with the Dementor in the Humanism sequence. He would have succeeded, had Hermione not been there to bring him out of it. So from Quirrell's point of vi... (read more)
My own (admittedly somewhat romantic) hypothesis is that Quirrelmort is trying to correct his past mistakes.
Recall the conversation that Dumbledore has with Harry regarding escalation and proportional response. Dumbledore tells Harry that the Light cannot, must not win every battle, because some victories come at too high a price. Harry, on the other hand, believes that the ends justify the means, and that it's all just a matter of thinking up a sufficiently clever solution. Without Dumbledore's intervention, he would've escalated the SPHEW-bully conflict to the point where it engulfs all of Magical Britain, and quite possibly plunges the Wizarding world into a new dark age of terror.
Does that sound familiar at all ?
My guess is that Voldemort, in his original body, was a bit like Harry. He wanted to optimize the Wizarding society, and in order to do so, he had to take over, and in order to make an omelette, you've got to break a few eggs, and there are people opposing you, and before you know it, you're a Dark Lord and people are skinning your opponents alive in your name. The only option was to fake your own death and start anew... which is exactly what Voldemort did.
He didn't abandon his campaign, he got blown out of his body when he tried to kill Harry Potter. Later on he possessed Quirrell, and as he said himself, "One can never quite disentangle the mind from the body it wears". Perhaps he's imbued with some of Quirrell's own opinions. Quirrell must have been somewhat Voldemort-ish before the possession, if Voldie chose him as a suitable vessel.
Incidentally, when all has he criticized Voldemort? I can think of one time, when he said that Voldie was foolish to wish the story of the dojo to be retold. But if Quirrell's part of the story was really Voldemort, then that was simply a lie; Voldie DIDN'T kill everyone on his first visit to the dojo, but later on, deliberately, to sow fear. At any rate, we shouldn't take Quirrell's opinions of Voldemort at face value, given that, to some extent, they're the same person. "Don't believe everything you read."
And Voldemort isn't training Britain's children to defeat a Dark Lord, he's training them to defeat the Muggles. In MoR, Voldemort actually has a good reason to hate Muggles and Muggleborns: their recklessness with power (nuclear weapons, etc.). In his speech before Christmas he all but stated his belief that there would someday be a climactic battle between wizardkind and the Muggle world, which only a united wizarding world could win. That is his ultimate purpose for Dark Harry: to lead the world (or help Voldie lead the world) against the Muggles.
When Dumbledore tells his closest colleagues that draining the life from a follower over a long period would render Voldemort weak compared to his former power, I'm inclined to believe him. Even if you're not, there's the rather inconvenient periods of near-catatonia to get around. (Unless you think that's an act for some reason?)
Doesn't seem like Quirrel to slip even if he can't see a way for it to hurt him. He's too careful for that.
There's a subtle joke in chapter 78 that I'm not sure is deliberate or not. While the most obvious thing connected to polyjuice potion and catgirls is what happens to Hermione in The Chamber of Secrets, what Harry does is mix physics and magic in a way that is also connected to catgirls. In some forums devoted to Dungeons and Dragons there's a saying that goes more or less like "Whenever you try to apply physics to magic, God kills a catgirl." I have to wonder if there's a deliberate reference to this.
I think that's a stretch. It's just another poke at canon.
(To Eliezer: if you're ever worried about the legal status of MoR, parody is the most obvious way to protect yourself under fair use doctrine, and these pokes at canon will be a main part of your case. I suggest not going light on them to the extent possible.)
Minor bug report: chapter 79 says "Blood-Cooling Charm" instead of "Blood-Chilling Charm" in one place.
I'm puzzled by Harry's sunlight potion. Did it not require a magical ingredient?
Since we are told that there are no magical ingredients in the lesser woods where the battles are fought, and that all the potions in the books that Harry looks through unlock and redistribute magical energy (rather than ostensibly non-magical energy like sunlight), does this mean that Harry discovered a way to brew potions without magical ingredients? I recall no hint that this is possible, and yet no one watching the battle seems to find the potion notable. To be fair, the ... (read more)
Remember how the professors made a big deal about Harry not discussing his discovery about potions?
Perhaps school manuals are picked to contain only potions with magic ingredients, as a misdirection for people not wise enough (students) to try to figure out the "well-known secret", the same way Harry was at first.
But Harry's potion didn't release a lot of magic, it only released light (note that in the coin example, it was the non-magical coin that furnished the "heat"), so probably Harry used a bit of magic (like in Potions class) to "rearrange" the light without need of magical ingredients.
(Also, why wouldn't "wizard hair" count as a magical ingredient?)
I noticed that the MediaFire link for the PDF version is dead---is that still being actively maintained?
In Chapter 79, Dumbledore speculates that Hermione's supposed attempted murder of Draco was a move by Voldemort to remove two of Harry's allies.
I wonder if it might rather be a move to turn Harry (even more) against Wizarding society by exposing the massive flaws of their justice system. (Of course, it could be both at once.)
Quirrel can turn Harry instantly and permanently against Dumbledore (edit: though not Wizarding society in general), any day he likes, by telling him that the Philosopher's stone exists and Dumbledore is allowing Flamel to hoard it (and the method for creating more) for himself.
No stronger method is needed. Harry would declare Dumbledore his enemy on the spot.
I think Quirrell would believe that seeing one's best friend imprisoned/subjugated/otherwise punished unfairly would have more of an effect than a book, even on Harry. I think he would be right, too.
It turns out, after a few minutes' contemplation, there was a previous discussion between Quirrell and Harry lurking in the background of this thought. From Chapter 60, The Stanford Prison Experiment, Pt 10: (emphasis added)... (read more)
He needed to visit it and hear the tortured captives crying out in anguish before he really appreciated its horror. Before he visited, he said "wow, that's awful, somebody should do something". After he visited he swore to the phoenix to dedicate his life to smashing it.
Well, then. I'm certainly glad I didn't wait until after Chapter 79 to register at Less Wrong and post all my theories about Santa Claus and S and H&C!
Alright, let's get this speculation-train started. My first and most obvious thought is this: Hermione beat Draco to a pulp, and Lucius reported it. He was definitely intending to do something, and would have been monitoring his son. The trouble with this theory is that it involved admitting that Hermione beat Draco fair and square. Still, for Dumbledore to cooperate Lucius is probably involved somehow.
Also, there's Professor Quirrell to account for. I find it unlikely his absence in unrelated, especially when he probably knew Lucius would be up to somethi... (read more)
It's entirely possible that this is entirely natural. Hermione beat Draco badly enough to put him in the Hospital Wing; either he's legitimately near-death, or Lucius blew it out of proportion.
Alternatively, Hermione and Draco actually talked it out and are currently laying a mutual trap to figure out who's using them both as pawns. I like this option, but it's also probably the least likely one.
To be honest, she reads more "hysterical and hiding it" then "unworried" to me.
New Disscussion Thread! Here.
So what are people's odds that Harry manages to get Hermione off?
I don't think they're at that stage in their relationship yet, do you?
A few points
Hat and Cloak almost slipped and said time travel.
Mary sue time travel is a common device in fan fiction.
The author has stated MoR includes elements that are necessary to ensure artistic completeness as a work of fan fiction.
Mary sue time travel was derisively referred to in the same conversation in which the idea of Sirius Black conspiracy theories were debunked.
There is a person in Azkaban who endlessly repeats "I'm not serious" (Sirius).
It is not possible to travel more than 6 hours back in time with a time turner.
I thought last we heard Hermione was being brainwashed. Is this all happening afterward? What does Hermione think Draco is plotting? Why is Hermione so upset and why hasn't she been talking to Harry?
I am so confused.
Does H&C want Lucius to try to destroy Harry? Because that's what's going to happen when Draco spills the beans about what they've been doing.
Why would Quirrel go to Fuyuki City in 1983? The 5th Holy Grail War takes place around 2003, with the 4th 10 years before during 1993. Assuming that Quirrel knew about the Grail Wars, he'd also have known about the 60 year cycles and would have little reason to arrive earlier. The earliest Zero relevant information happens eight years earlier in 1985. The closest event in TYPE MOON chronology would be Shiki's birth or the first case of Agonist Disorder. But the former is related more to Misaki town than Fuyuki city and the latter is from DDD... which only ... (read more)
This is a Harry Potter fic, not a crossover. It's a Shout Out, not an actual reference.
I admit, however, that if the dates were right I would totally be supporting one of the H&Cs being Heroic Spirit POTTER.
Chap 79 - EY's added #40 on list to read.
Did anybody bothered to check previous spells on Hermione, Snape, and Quirrell wands? EDIT: Ok, we''re told Quirrell cast tens of spells since 06:33, still - they should check just to be sure.
Now it seems Harry should just kidnapp Hermione and hide here somewhere(And give her cloak to hide her from tracking spels).
"Professor Quirrell had cast tracking Charms because he had learned of a person with a motive to harm Mr. Malfoy. Professor Quirrell had refused to identify this person." hmm, why hadn't they used veritaserum on Quirrell to ask him who ... (read more)
So, what kind of "miracle" will Harry produce for the next battle (assuming for a moment that Hermione is going to be released, and there will be a next battle)?
I thought that maybe he finds a way to learn wordless magic, thus having a huge advantage since the others don't know what spells will be coming. But then I realized that it's not even necessary -- in the heat of the battle it's enough not to shout the incantation, whispering it will mean that the opponent can't hear it.
It's a simple enough thing that I wonder why none of Harry, Hermione, and Draco seem to consider it.
At least I haven't found any indication that shouting the words of a spell make it more powerful.
Snape says this in both MoR and the original book:
Isn't this silly? Of course you can stopper death, because duh, poisons exist.
It might be just a slip-up in the original book, but I'm hoping it will somehow make sense in MoR. My first thought was that maybe a magical death potion couldn't be stopped using magical healing, unlike non-magical poisons.
I asked this on IRC and got some interesting ideas. feep thought it might mean that you can make a Potion of Dementor, which w... (read more)
I was annoyed that I wasn't catching the clues about H&C other people pointed out, even after rereading some chapters.
But it did make me wonder if there are definite clues at all, and if Eliezer had written so far with a specific person in mind. When he chooses to reveal who it is, he could have a list of plausible H&Cs and randomnumber it. The clues are vague enough that massive hindsight bias seems possible.
Now, he probably wouldn't do this, considering that writing five plots is much harder than one, but if I were a talented enough writer I would try. Then laugh at everyone attempting to guess ahead of time.
Was the potions thing foreshadowed? Did we ever see a magical weakling brewing an advanced potion before this chapter?
This may have been covered already, but are there reasons why the armies (especially Harry, of course) aren't using magic to increase their mental, magical, and/or physical endurance? For that matter, what about ordinary stimulants?
So does HPMOR.com not update as quickly as I thought? They're quite late with this latest author's note.
This was rather lazy of you. If you had just checked the latest author's notes you'd have noticed that Eliezer mentions a hope to post the next chapter before March 11th.
Even if you don't expect his update to come that soon, this hardly qualifies for a "hiatus" or even worse "abandonment", when the author expresses the desire to post the next chapter at start of next week...
I'm thinking that Harry is about to try to either command or destroy the dementor. To do either, he'd have to leave his dark side, so I'm not sure how successful he'll be. I'm close to certain that the Eliezer put the dementor there for a reason, and that the reason probably wasn't so that Harry could say, "dementors are bad" again.
I was playing with a cat this morning, and I thought to myself:
As phoenixes are to Gryffindor, so are cats to Ravenclaw, and dogs to Hufflepuff.
Phoenixes know only bravery; dogs know only playfulness and loyalty; cats know only curiosity.
I think the dog one is best, but I couldn't think of anything for Slytherin.
Chapter 79 is out!
My first thought was that Quirrell is behind this, and he is trying to strip away Harry's friends and isolate him. It's pretty clear that Mr. Hat and Cloak is Quirrell (I can argue this elsewhere if you disagree), and we know that Mr H&C is behind Hermione's recent brainwashing.
The problem is that this plot ends with Quirrell blowing his cover. We can guess that Quirrell cast those spells protecting Draco in chapter 40, after learning that Lord Malfoy had threatened to give his entire game away as revenge against Harry should his so... (read more)
I'm a bit confused about what punishment Hermione is facing. Dumbledore said that Lucius's proposal is that Hermione's blood debt to Draco be repaid, but I don't know what that means except that Dumbledore also says that she will not be killed or put in Azkaban. Fred and George heard a rumor that she's going to be forced to be Draco's slave, which sounds like a plausible interpretation for "repaying a blood debt." If that's true, then I don't see what the big rush about unframing Hermione is for. It would make more sense in that case to focus on ... (read more)
The word "slave" isn't in the text. When I read their statement, I had the horrifying thought that maybe I knew where house elves came from...
Comment on 79, which was just posted 45 minutes ago, so go read it.
Well, 79 certainly funneled the story a bit. Answered lots of questions and a clear path forward. I was kind of hoping for it to end like, "At the end of a hallway, the Defense Professor walked out of the newly empty room." That part could still be told in the next chapter, of course...
It seemed to me that I'd read a lot of chapter 77 before. Not all of it, but most of the conversation in Dumbledore's memorial room. Did Eliezer already use this scene earlier? Or was the chapter posted earlier, withdrawn, and then revised?
Prediction: Lucious' questioning of Malfoy and subsequent discussion will have results such that Hermione will be saved by the restraint of the Malfoy family in choosing not to punish her severely if at all.
"Mr. Potter, I found my son's memories of your experiments most convincing. Teach me more of these Methods of Rationality you speak of."
Wait, what was it Harry said about optimism?
i know were all buzzing about this new chapter, but I found a gem in our newly placed 76 with this ""Grindelwald possessed an ancient and terrible device," said Dumbledore. "While he held it, I could not break his defense. In our duel I could not win, only fight him for long hours until he fell in exhaustion; and I would have died of it afterward, if not for Fawkes. But while his Muggle allies yet made blood sacrifice to sustain him, Grindelwald would not have fallen. He was, during that time, truly invincible. Of that grim device which... (read more)
A rather strange conclusion, since what Dumbledore says about a "an ancient and terrible device" in this altered paragraph fits much better to the canonical Ryqre Jnaq.
I'd like to "Hold Off on Proposing Solutions" or in this case hold off on advocating answers. I don't have time to list all the important bits of data we should be considering or enumerate all the current hypotheses, but I think both would be quite valuable.
Some quick hypothesis:
-Mr. Hat & Cloak is Quirrellmort & responsible for Hermione's 'condition'
-Mr. Hat & Cloak is Lucious & responsible for Hermione's 'condition'
-Mr. Hat & Cloak is Voldemort, but not the Quirrell body.
-Mr. Hat & Cloak is Quirrellmort and trying to ... (read more)
My theory is that Lucius trumped up these charges against Hermione entirely independent of the midnight duel. He was furious that Hermione defeated Draco in combat, and this is his retaliation.
I doubt that Hermione attended the duel; or, if she did attend it, I doubt that anything bad happened.
My theory does not explain why Draco isn't at breakfast. So maybe my theory is wrong.
I am confused about why H&C wanted Hermione to be defeated by Draco during the big game when Lucius was watching. If you believe H&C is Quirrell (and I do): did Quirrell go to all that trouble just to impress Lucius with how his son was doing? That seems like an awful risk for not much reward.