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Hindsight Devalues Science

I read a few of the sequences now (including this one), and started to find that:

A: They were very interesting to read. B: They seemed a bit obvious, like common sense.

This was somewhat confusing, as things which really are obvious are very familiar and predictable, and thus, not so interesting to experience.

It's only my second time reading this (and first time reading the italics Exploring Social Psychology italics excerpt italics, that I've come to appreciate a link between sufficient explanation and illusion of obviousness.

So keep on dropping in hyper-links to previous sections like you do, they're really helpful.

p.s. The help tables' section on italics was not quite so good, as I've refrained from editing the result in order to demonstrate.

Defeating Ugh Fields In Practice

The problem is that if she knows what the reward is, she may anchor on already having the reward, turning it back into negative reinforcement - if you promise your kid a trip to Disneyland if they get above a 3.5, and they get a 3.3, they feel like they actually lost something. The use of a gambling mechanism may be key for this. If your reward is a chance at a real reward, you don't anchor as already having the reward, but the reward still excites you.

So the technique described here requires thinking that an X chance of Y is better or worse than a certainty of XY?

We could do with some alternative approaches to ugh field defeat, so here's one.

Yesterday, when I was trying to decide to go to bed (just "to", not "whether to"), I managed to create an effective "counter" ugh field to staying up, by considering that at the same time I'd be worrying about the results, failing at something so very basic, and turning back to the hellish failure mode of losing self control in general (A phase I consider my worst experience of all (admittedly short) time).

I don't know whether the last point is something everyone goes through at some time (like a second puberty) but I'm sure you can come up with your own points to mount counter-ugh-fields on.

Constructing fictional eugenics (LW edition)

I bet the story could get a lot of drama from asking the dramatic-question: How will X react to finding they're expected-negative/positive?

If they're expected negative, do they try and defy the prediction? does it help them exceed their "higher scored" peers? Or do they go off the deep end, risking all in mad shenanigans?

And so on and so forth.

Forcing Anthropics: Boltzmann Brains

If I wake up in a red room after the coin toss, I'm going to assume that there are a billion of us in red rooms, and one in a green room, and vice versa. That way a billion of me are assuming the truth, and one is not. So chances are (Billion-and-one out of billion) that this iteration of me is assuming the truth.

We'll each have to accept, of course, the possibility of being wrong, but hey, it's still the best option for me altogether.

Tomorrow I'll talk about what sort of trouble you run into if you reply "a billion to one".

Trouble? We'll take it on together, because every "I" is in this team. [applause]