Today's post, Wise Pretensions v.0 was originally published on 20 February 2009. A summary (taken from the LW wiki):


An earlier post, on the same topic as yesterday's post.

Discuss the post here (rather than in the comments to the original post).

This post is part of the Rerunning the Sequences series, where we'll be going through Eliezer Yudkowsky's old posts in order so that people who are interested can (re-)read and discuss them. The previous post was Pretending to be Wise, and you can use the sequence_reruns tag or rss feed to follow the rest of the series.

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This version is one hundred times better, in my opinion.

The yesterday's version has the same information and it feels more Wise. Which is a good thing, in a society where Wisdom is valued and rationality ignored.

But it wouldn't make me stand up and do something about it. I would just read it, say "yes, yes, he is absolutely right", and then forget it within the next ten minutes.

This version would, though?

I found yesterday's version better, because I think that what Eliezer refers to as "flashes of eloquence" in the earlier essay sound affected.

Talking about wisdom doesn't mean it's a good idea to adopt the speech patterns of your model of a Wise Person.

I find the 2009 version more eloquent, for the lack of misplaced poetic flourish. In most contexts, using practically defunct words like "ofttimes" will make people think not "how poetic," but "why is this person trying so hard to be poetic?"

By "this version" you mean the 2006 version? Does it really feel less wise than the 2009 version? To me it's definitely the opposite, but perhaps it depends on what kind of wisdom signalling one expects. The older version reads more like something a revered writer or theologian may write, the newer is written in a style that associates more with science.

For the record, I prefer the newer version.