I am able to distinguish between observations and inferences, and I certainly never argued that Millicent (or, rather, her sister/Miss Felthorne) was actually a seer. The problem was that Hermione seemed not to distinguish between them, even in a mental aside. Heck, even Draco only took one conversation with Harry before he figured out the difference between demonstrable facts and non-demonstrable explanations for those facts.

Of course, the more I think about it the less unlikely it seems. The whole 'pressure in Time' business rather offended my sensibilities at first, but... well, they certainly don't treat fragile Time-Turners as though they were irreplaceable artifacts of lost Atlantis, which rather implies they can make more, which rather implies (though certainly does not prove, given the example of Transfiguration) that they have some idea what they're talking about when it comes to the theory.

I think it also sort of implies that Eliezer has a coherent metaphysics going on behind the scenes. The decision theoretic generalization of anthropic selection, reifcation of good story selection effects like conservation of detail or whatchamacallit from tvtropes, things like that. I heard that he once wrote a story about time machines? Or at least one about "outcome pumps". I wouldn't be surprised if he reuses his cleverest ideas from there in HP:MoR.

One question about theology, miracles, and Newcomblike problems that intrigues me:

If I was in... (read more)

Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, part 9

by Oscar_Cunningham 1 min read9th Sep 2011725 comments


(The HPMOR discussion thread after this one is here.)

The previous thread is over the 500-comment threshold, so let's start a new Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread.  This is the place to discuss Eliezer Yudkowsky's Harry Potter fanfic and anything related to it. The latest chapter as of 09/09/2011 is Ch. 77.

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.  The fanfiction.net author page is the central location for information about updates and links to HPMOR-related goodies, and AdeleneDawner has kept an archive of Author's Notes.

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.