Closed Limelike Curves

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The article provides one possible resolution to one Fermi paradox, but not another, and I think both a lot of literature and the comments here are pretty confused about the difference.

The possibly-resolved Fermi paradox: "Why do we see no life, when we'd expect to see tens of thousands of civilizations on average?" Assuming there really is no alien life, this paper answers that pretty convincingly: the distribution of civilizations is highly-skewed, such that the probability that only one civilization exists can be pretty large even if the average number of civilizations is still very high.

The unresolved Fermi paradox is "Why aren't there any aliens?" This paper doesn't answer that question (nor does it try to). It's just pointing out that there's a ton of possible reasons, so it's not all that surprising that some combination of them might be very restrictive


It sounds like a good idea, so I wouldn’t be surprised if it already exists.

I pledge to match the bounty of the next person to pledge $5,000, because of research showing this encourages people to donate money.

So if someone else pledges, we’ve reached a third of the median US salary.

I can confirm Julia and R both have one-based arrays and also one-based month numbers. I'm guessing they tend to line up quite often.

If “women’s college” is a proxy variable for “liberal arts college”, that’s a good reason to ding people for listing a women’s college.

I suspect you're misunderstanding what a "Liberal arts college" is. In theory, a liberal arts college is one that focuses exclusively on "Academic" subjects, rather than purely practical ones. Math, science, and technology would all fall under the liberal arts, but a liberal arts college won't offer degrees in, say, accounting. In practice, a liberal arts college is a small college that focuses on teaching and only offers undergraduate degrees.

Liberal arts undergrads generate a disproportionate number of PhDs in the sciences. Swarthmore, for instance, has more Nobel laureates per student than any other school (including all the Ivy League colleges).

Do you have any strong evidence to back this up? Opinions on education are dime a dozen, studies are what I'd like to see for once.

This is fair and an important caveat. Pure arbitrage disappears quickly in the market. At the same time, though, no pure arbitrage profits is only necessary and not sufficient for full efficiency. An efficient market means no (or very few) positive expected utility opportunities still left around. The EMH still implies the price of shorts should have fallen until it became economically feasible to correct the mispricing.

This post seems both interesting and like a way to get a very unrepresentative sample.

I find it difficult to imagine how returns could be literally negative – it's not as though people are anti-correlated with the truth – unless you're taking into account some effect like "Annoying people by making too many coronavirus posts."

I agree, in that a very small improvement on a cryptocurrency shouldn't actually result in it outcompeting everything else. The thing is that Bitcoin has at this point been completely pummeled by other cryptocurrencies like Ethereum or stablecoins in terms of usefulness, to the point where it seems clear to me that Bitcoin mostly exists and will continue to exist only for speculative purposes.

(Also: The opposite of the virtue of lightness usually goes by the name of conservatism bias in the cognitive science literature.)

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