All of chaosmage's Comments + Replies

"The Social Leap" by William von Hippel. He basically says we diverged from chimps when we left the forests for the savannah not only by becoming more cooperative (standard example: sclera that make our focus of attention common knowledge) but also by becoming much more flexible in our social behaviors, cooperating or competing much more dependent on context, over the last six million years.

I have tried and failed to find a short quote in it to paste here. It's a long and occasionally meandering book, much more alike the anthropological than the rationalist literature.

I didn't say the risk was "very high" (which would indeed be nonsense), I said it is non-zero. And I personally know two men who were tricked into becomng fathers.

And the thing with average intelligence is that only 50% of the population has it. For both partners to have it has to be (slightly) less likely than that.

2dr_s2mo
No risk is zero, that's not a reasonable way to think about control over one's life. And you don't choose partners at random so intelligence send conscientiousness in couples probably correlate far better than that.

There are biological problems you might not know you have, there are women who lie about contraception, there are hormonal pressures you won't feel till you reach a certain age, there are twins and stillbirth, and most of all there are super horny split second decisions in the literal heat of the moment that your system 2 is too slow to stop.

This is absolutely nonsense IMO for any couple of grown ups of at least average intelligence who trust each other. People plan children all the time and are often successful; with a little knowledge and foresight I don't think the risk of having unplanned children is very high.

I continue to stand by this post.

I believe that in our studies of human cognition, we have relatively neglected the aggressive parts of it. We understand they're there, but they're kind of yucky and unpleasant, so they get relatively little attention. We can and should go into more detail, try to understand, harness and optimize aggression, because it is part of the brains that we're trying to run rationality on.

I am preparing another post to do this in more depth.

2chaosmage2mo
This is the other, more in-depth post I was preparing. https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/5SbwfQgHCoGRG9LQ9/inside-view-outside-view-and-opposing-view

I'd like to complain that the original post popularizing really bright lights was mine in 2013: My simple hack for increased alertness and improved cognitive functioning: very bright light — LessWrong . This was immediately adopted at MIRI and (I think obviously) led to the Lumenator described by Eliezer three years later.

I suspect it is creation of memories. You don't experience time when you're not creating memories, and they're some kind of very subtle object that lasts from one moment to (at least) the next so they leave a very subtle trace in causality, and the input that goes into them is correlated in time, because it is (some small selection from) the perceptions and representations you had simultaneously when you formed the memory.

I even believe you experience a present moment particularly intensely when you're creating a long-term memory - I use this to consciously choose to create long-term memories, and it subjectively seems to work.

That's exactly right. It would be much better know a simple method of how to distinguish overconfidence from being actually right without a lot of work. In the absence of that, maybe tables like this can help people choose more epistemic humility.

Well of course there are no true non-relatives, even the sabertooth and antelopes are distant cousins. The question is how much you're willing to give up for how distant cousins. Here I think the mechanism I describe changes the calculus.

I don't think we know enough about the lifestyles of cultures/tribes in the ancestral environment, except we can be pretty sure they were extremely diverse. And all cultures we've ever found have some kind of incest taboo that promotes mating between members of different groups.

I am utterly in awe. This kind of content is why I keep coming back to LessWrong. Going to spend a couple of days or weeks digesting this...

Welcome. You're making good points. I intend to make versions of this geared to various audiences but haven't gotten around to it.

A big bounty creates perverse incentives where one guy builds a dangerous AI in a jurisdiction where that isn't a crime yet, and his friend reports him so they can share the bounty.

I did not know this, and I like it. Thank you!

No it doesn't mean you shouldn't be consequentialist. I'm challenging people to point out the flaw in the argument.

If you find the argument persuasive, and think the ability to "push the fat man" (without getting LW tangled up in the investigation) might be a resource worth keeping, the correct action to take is not to comment, and perhaps to downvote.

I find it too hard to keep things unrelated over time, so I prefer to keep thinking up new objects at what passes for random to my sleepy mind.

Yes, my method is to visualize a large collection of many small things that have no relation to each other, like a big shelf of random stuff. Sometimes I throw them in all directions. This is the best method I have found.

2Gunnar_Zarncke2y
I let my mind wander quickly from visuals to forms to patterns to speech to persons or some such - all unrelated to each other. It doesn't work reliably but better than nothing.

I think seeking status and pointing out you already have some are two different things. Writing an analysis, it would be quite relevant to mention what expertise or qualifications you have concerning the subject matter.

I'd go as far as to say justified pride and status-seeking is actually a virtue and a moral duty!

Why? Because status is a signal: high status people are worth imitating. That isn't all status is, but it is a very central benefit that justifies its existence. If you are really successful, and you're hiding that, you're refusing to share valuable information. They might want to check what you're dong right, and imitate that, hopefully becoming more sucessful themselves.

And why would you refuse to seek justified status? I see only three reasons.

  • Fear of embara
... (read more)
2ChristianKl3y
When I write a post the post will be different when it's written to seeking truth then when it's written to seek truth and seek justified status. While often both goals are alligned there are times when they are not aligned and one has to make a decision. It's even worse because given the way the human mind works those decisions are often made without thinking about them in favor of status as evolution primed us to seek status.  To not have your desire to seek status disturb your ability to hold accurate beliefs about the world it's necessary to partly ignore status seeking impulses. When thinking about writing a grant application it's important to convey justified status. When writing an analysis of a topic it's less important. 
3Rafael Harth3y
One reason would be that seeking status will lead to you having less of it, which I strongly think is true insofar as 'seeking' means 'having it as the driving motivation'. Think about how many of the high-status people in the rationalist sphere are relatively status-blind. If we draw from fiction, note that this is true for Harry in hpmor, too. It's also not always true that high status people are worth imitiating or listening to, but I would agree if you just meant on average.

I will reluctantly concede this is logical. If you want to optimize for maximal happiness, find out what the minimal physical correlate of happiness is, and build tiny replicators that do nothing but have a great time. Drown the planet in them. You can probably justify the expense of building ships and ship builders with a promise of more maximized happiness on other planets.

But this is basically a Grey Goo scenario. Happy Goo.

Yes it's a logical conclusion, yes it is repugnant, and I think it's a reductio ad absurdum of the whole idea of optimizing for conscious states. An even more dramatic one than wild animal suffering.

I think this is off topic here, except it does sort of the same thing by breaking principles down I to concrete statements. That said, I think that site is exceptionally well-written and designed. I wish other persuasion projects adopted that kind of approach.

Oh I know how!

When Einstein figured out spacetime, we rethought not only physics, but also other faulty conclusions from our false assumption that reality is three-dimensional. Everything is moving through four dimensions, including us, and that means we're four-dimensional too, although our consciousness is limited to three-dimensional moments.

We started to see ourselves as growing through time like four-dimensional snakes. Or branches, really, since we've all branched off our four-dimensional others when we were born. And by simple recursion we realized ... (read more)

4Avi3y
Haha - you've clearly thought about the mechanism more than I have!! Very interesting (and entertaining) - thanks.

Awesome article, I would only add another huge AR-enabled transformation that you missed.

AR lets you stream your field of view to someone and hear their comments. I hear this is already being used in airplane inspection: a low level technician at some airfield can look at an engine and stream their camera to a faraway specialist for that particular engine and get their feedback if it is fine, or instructions what to do for diagnostics and repair. The same kind of thing is apparently being explored for remote repairs of things like oil pipelines, where quic... (read more)

South Africa, and Brazil where the South Africa strain is apparently spreading, are in summer right now. How are temperatures going to save us from that one?

Did you share it with your son, and if so what was the result?

3Gunnar_Zarncke4y
"I will read it later, dad" which is OK, sometimes it sticks, sometimes it does not.

I'm fantasizing about infographics with multiple examples of the same bias, an explanation how they're all biased the same way, and very brief talking points like "we're all biased, try to avoid this mistake, forgive others if they make it, learn more at LessWrong.com".

They could be mass produced with different examples. Like one with a proponent of Minimum Wage and an opponent of it, arguing under intense confirmation bias as described in the table above, with a headline like "Why discussions about Minimum Wage often fail&quo... (read more)

2Mathisco4y
No harm done with experimenting a bit I suppose. Do you have examples of infographics that come close to what you have in mind?

I'm using pictures because I couldn't get either editor to accept a proper table.

2Stuart_Armstrong4y
You can do it in latex, with textrm to get your formatting out of the math mode. Not elegant, but it serves: SystemSA possible?Penalty neutralised?20BQYesNoRRYesNoAUProbablyMostly Code: $$\begin{array}{|c|c|c|c|} \hline \textrm{System}&& SA\textrm{ possible?} & \textrm{Penalty neutralised?} \\ \hline\hline \textrm{20BQ} && \textrm{Yes} & \textrm{No} \\ \hline \textrm{RR} && \textrm{Yes} & \textrm{No}\\ \hline \textrm{AU} && \textrm{Probably} & \textrm{Mostly}\\ \hline \end{array}$$
2orthonormal4y
Relatedly, there's an awkward cursor line in the top-right box for optimism bias.
6habryka4y
Sorry for that! We do have an editor in the works that has proper table support. 

In a car park? But they will be way more densely packed than cars in car parks, because no humans need access. The cabins get placed there and retrieved from there by autonomous engines.

1Kenny4y
Good answer! I was thinking about people living in detached homes in residential neighborhoods, i.e. places where I would expect local politics to prevent car parks ('parking lots' in my colloquialisms) from being built at all.

Here are more use cases.

  • A specialized cabin for your kid to drive to/from school alone, or for your toddler to drive to/from kindergarten alone. Robotaxis will definitely be used for this because it is super valuable to parents. But a small specialized cabin would be more economical than a standard (typical car size) cabin fitted with child seats.
  • Visiting dialysis station.
  • Specialized delivery cabins for particular types of cargo: refrigerated, extra suspension, stuff for transporting animals. We do this with trucks, but trucks are big because they're
... (read more)
1Kenny4y
Specialized cabins seem like they would hurt this idea – where would people store all of their cabins?

I think I made a mistake using the word "accommodation". (English isn't my first language.) What I meant is basically "where the people and cargo are stored safely and comfortably". That can be something big to live in, but it could also be a single seat cabin for a commute.

The point is you can have several different types for different purposes, because you don't need to buy an expensive motor and computer with each of them.

Good points.

Agree about the battery swaps, but swapping a tug would be easier.

Cargo containers are definitely like this, but they're big because it is more economical to spread the cost of the driver over a large amount of cargo. Cargo wagons/modules could be in a wide range of sizes, including small/fast ones that are more like courier service than like bulk transport.

You don't need a parking spot - the system can still be used as a robotaxi, it just has additional uses.

You don't need to be where your wagon is, you can send it places. Because of that, you could even rent out your wagon (say you offer a rental sound system or a mobile massage parlor).

2Matt Goldenberg4y
Wait how can you use as robotaxi without a wagon? They provide standard wagons?
3sig4y
...but you could put a bed in your wagon? And you could rent out your bed to massage parlors? I think this system is going to have some hygiene issues with most people...

If you're a first world citizen and able to spend $35k+ on a car, sure. Most of the cars that need replacing are way cheaper, and their replacement needs to be way cheaper too.

3Dagon4y
According to Kelly Blue Book, the average new light vehicle in the US was $37,185 in May 2019. Replacement pretty much has to happen as a substitution for new car sales, then flowing into the pre-owned markets.
1Dustin4y
Isn't that just the price of an electric car right now? Won't they be vastly cheaper in the future?

There is a Secular Solstice in Berlin, Germany, but it happens in a small apartment so it has to be invitation only and is already full AFAIK.

Frankfurt, Germany might again be doing one but I do not know particulars.

Leipzig, Germany is not having one this year due to the place where the last couple of Solstices happened being currently infested with toddlers.

2UnplannedCauliflower5y
Berlin location has been changed, but the space is still somewhat limited (date: 15th December). Contact Anne (Lachoutte?) if you really want to attend Frankfurt definitely has a Solstice celebration, but I don't know the details.

The text is beautifully condensed. And the handwritten style does help it look casual/inviting.

But the whole thing loaded significantly slower than I read. How many megabytes is this post? I haven't waited this long for a website to load for years.

4habryka5y
This should now be fixed! We added compression to all the images, and things should now pretty fast (total size of the images is <1 MB)

Good, point. We just uploaded the images that Abram gave us, but I just realized that they are quite large and have minimal compression applied to them.

I just experimented with some compression and it looks like we can get a 5x size reduction without any significant loss in quality, so we will go and replace all the images with the compressed ones. Thanks for pointing that out!

What really helps is mortality and our inbred need to leave a legacy. It is better to pick a project with low probability of success than none at all. That can help you stick with something you only estimate to have a low chance of success, at least long enough to have sunk costs kick in. Does for me anyway.

This mechanism may only work for one man projects, or work in tight knit groups like bands of musicians. Your contribution to a big project doesn't feel like a legacy to the same degree.

1cousin_it5y
Good point. Isn't that a bit neurotic though? I pretty much avoid dreaming about any kind of legacy (apart from kids), because that would be setting myself up for unhappiness in old age.

That sounds a *lot* like http://slatestarcodex.com/2018/04/01/the-hour-i-first-believed/ .

It does not sound a lot like any existing variant of Panpsychism. Since the word isn't doing any work here, I suggest you do without it.

3mako yass5y
It's a genre. I sort of hope we never actually give rise to any simulist religions that people come to earnestly believe in, but we probably will. Most of those religions wont be true. Some of them might be. I don't know. Not sure what you mean. Disambiguate "it"? The presented theory (Concentrated Existence) is not something I would call panpsychism. It might be implied by panpsychism. It should still have its own name.

No, the degree of outrage also depends on closeness to the victim. In this case Jews will feel closer to Israelis (the victims of Palestinians), and Muslims will feel closer to Palestinians (the victims of Israelis) so that's what they're outraged about. Closeness to the perpetrator is a factor I think, but I don't expect it is stronger than closeness to the victim.

Yes! Thank you!

I've had similar ideas for a long time. I've translated three books and find that I think of many acts of communication as translations. In particular, I find it useful to think of misunderstandings as mistranslations.

To think of thinking/speaking styles as languages just plain makes sense, and I feel that when people "are on the same wavelength" what is really happening is that they're (somewhat unusually) actually speaking the same language.

I don't use this concept for processes inside a single mind, though. M... (read more)

#6 is really "we want legal euthanasia" right? Might as well say it like it is.

I think legal prostitution belongs on the list as well.

And maybe an end to tax advantages for churches? Because that's direct state funding for irrationality.

2fortyeridania6y
Upvoted for the suggestion to reword the euthanasia point.

This fake frameworks thing looks quite clearly like Chaos Magic, and the reference to the Book of the Law quote "wine and strange drugs" is a dog whistle to that effect.

Some chaos magicians like to use drug experiences as ready-made containers for what Val calls the Mythic Mode. Some drugs can both increase the ability to suspend disbelief while inside the experience and make it easier to distance oneself from it when outside of it. A good description of techniques for this, with all non-scientific woo-woo strictly optional, is Julian Vayne'... (read more)

4Eric Raymond3y
The reference to the Book of the Law was intentional.  The reference to chaos magic was not, as that concept had yet to be formulated when I wrote the essay - at least, not out where I could see it. I myself do not use psychoactives for magical purposes; I've never found it necessary and consider them a rather blunt and chancy instrument.  I do occasionally take armodafinil for the nootropic effect, but that is very recent and long postdates the essay.
2dsatan6y
There are a lot of different people who talk about similar thing. Impro was mentioned. There's also Jung. They are probably interrelated and have similar influences. I'd be very wary of Chaos Magick in who it seems to explicitly break down useful psychic walls for the sake of freedom and power (eg. rejecting virtue).

I posted the idea of installing very bright lights on LW five years ago and Eliezer commented there so I give myself credit for at least making that spontaneous idea more likely. And it happens to be the case I've been thinking about the failings of light boxes for SAD in the meantime.

What happened is that a few people experimented with light therapy, got succcess with 2500lux for two hours, decided two hours per day was infeasible outside the lab, found that they could get the same result dividing the time but multiplying the light intensity and then... (read more)

3ChristianKl6y
Why isn't a light box maker willing to pay $100,000 as a marketing expense?

Yes. I wonder how hard it'll be to sleep in the things. I find sleeper trains generally a bad place to sleep, but that's mostly because of the other passengers.

I should be disappointed, but disappointment requires surprise.

Don't worry, you didn't actually come across that way, Lumifer is just being a jerk again. You're fairly new here, so you don't yet know Lumifer prefers that kind of comment. Sorry about him, and about LW not having a mute button.

I completely agree with everything you said here.

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