DaFranker

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Stupid Questions December 2014

[...] how do we get civilizations with a sufficiently long attention span?

I heard Ritalin has a solution. Couldn't pay attention long enough to verify. ba-dum tish

On a serious note, isn't the whole killing-the-Earth-for-our-children thing a rather interesting scenario? I've never seen it mentioned in my game theory-related reading, and I find that to be somewhat sad. I'm pretty sure a proper modeling of the game scenario would cover both climate change and eaten-by-red-giant.

Stupid Questions December 2014

I'm curious about the thought process that led to this being asked in the "stupid questions" thread rather than the "very advanced theoretical speculation of future technology" thread. =P

As a more serious answer: Anything that would effectively give us a means to alter mass and/or the effects of gravity in some way (if there turns out to be a difference) would help a lot.

Does utilitarianism "require" extreme self sacrifice? If not why do people commonly say it does?

As ZankerH said, it leaves out the "required to make" part. Also, gjm's particular formulation of 2' makes a statement about comparisons between two given decisions, not a statement about the entire search space of possible decisions.

Natural selection defeats the orthogonality thesis

Thanks for making it way clearer than I did. And yes, I forgot the 1:1 edge case.

As for modifying, a minor edit or bug similar to this is always 60% formulation and specification, 10% code modification, and 30% testing and making sure you're not breaking half the project. It sounds like you've already done around 75% of the work.

(deployment not included in above pseudo-figures, since the proportional deployment hurdles varies enormously by setup, environment, etc.)

Superintelligence 5: Forms of Superintelligence

This sounds more like a conflation between the "availability" of S&T versus the "presence" of S&T.

Technology being in the public domain does not mean the remote-savannah nomad knows how to use wikipedia, has been trained in the habit of looking for more efficient production methods, is being incentivized by markets or other factors to raising his productivity, or has at his disposal an internet-connected, modern computer, another business nearby that also optimizes production of one of his raw materials / business requirements, and all the tools and practical manuals and human resources and expertise to use them.

Long story short, there's a huge difference between "Someone invented these automated farming tools and techniques, and I know they exist" and "I have the practical ability to obtain an automated farming vehicle, construct or obtain a facility complete with tools and materials for adjustment so I can raise livestock, contacts who also have resources like trucks (who in turn have contacts with means to sell them fuel), and contacts who can transform and distribute my products."

The former is what you have when something is "public domain" and you take the time to propagate all the information about it. The latter, and all the infrastructure and step-by-step work required to get there, is what you need before the economic growth kicks in.

I believe the latter was being referred to by "advances in science and technology".

Questions on Theism

Here's a data point, do your own bayes accordingly:

I've frequently been able to solve mind or brain-related problems by doing actions conceptually similar to, or sometimes literally by, praying to God. I'm not a believer in any way, but the simple attempt to convince myself that I was communicating with some higher outside entity that had the power to solve my problem did solve my problem.

Here's the other evidence I have at my disposal, all of which I am confident above 90%:

  1. My subconscious knows and understands everything - everything - that I think consciously, or even feel in passing.
  2. My subconscious is much more powerful than my conscious with regards to such issues, with "power" corresponding here to having more input channels and more output channels for the same problem-solving ability.
  3. My subconscious probably can figure out technical neurological or psychological solutions for things that aren't even in my (conscious) power to solve (either because I don't have the input to identify the properties of the problem, or to be aware of the exact nature of the problem, or don't have the output to affect the specific things in my brain / thoughts that need to be affected to undo the pattern causing the problem).

So by those assumptions, and a few other assumptions about base rates, it seems normal for me to conclude that my subconscious fixes problems for me when I "pray", as opposed to some deitic entity. But since you may not share my confidence in the above crucial beliefs, or my assumptions about base rates, the data point of my problems being solved by "prayer" might lead you to a different conclusion.

Natural selection defeats the orthogonality thesis

It's pretty much already provided, there's just that minor inconvenience of algebra between you and the article's vote counts, which IMO is a good thing.

As of 10/15, the article sits at -13, 24% positive (hover mouse over the karma score to see %).

That's 24x-76x = -13 -> 4x = 1:

6 upvotes, 19 downvotes, net -13.

Politics is hard mode

And no, the consequences of talking about politics are not that grave. I mean you seem to blog about politics all the time and you have not yet imploded.

The consequences of talking about politics have historically made empire-sweeping changes about religion, slavery, gender, warfare, welfare, culture, honor, social stigma, social divide, economics, prosperity, technology, and even politics itself!

Talking about politics has also started wars and made people start involving themselves in the slave trade and other such unhappy things.

And because the Internet Law calls for it: Talking about politics is what caused Hitler to become propped up by other people to the authority he had and what caused other people to listen to him and do those things I don't need to mention.

Every political fanatic you've ever heard of, who showed up in a newspaper because he burned down a preschool in the name of [insert ideology], got to the point of doing that because of people talking about politics (or sufficiently politics-like topics).

I think the consequences are grave enough to warrant Yvain's level of concern.

This is why we can't have social science

It's ironic in the same way that adding the text "DEFACING STOP SIGNS" under the main text of a stop sign is ironic.

The method used is the very one which is being condemned / warned against, and the fact that it works better than other methods (in both examples) only adds to the irony, as one should assume that something that preaches not doing exactly what it's doing would invalidate itself, rather than its actual effect of producing greater results due to a quirk of humans.

What Is Signaling, Really?

Yes, of course. These particular traits you have deigned to consider for your worthy evaluation do seem, to me as well, perfectly sane.

I think you forgot to activate your Real World Logic coprocessor before replying, and I'm being sarcastic and offensive in this response.

In more serious words, these particular selected characteristics do not comprise the entirety of "the system" aforementioned. I've said that the system is /unlikely/ to be sane, as I do not have complete information on the entire logic and processes in it. I also think we're working off of different definitions of "sane" - here, IIRC, I was using a technical version that could be better expressed as "close to perfectly rational, in the same way perfect logicians can be in theoretical formal logic puzzles".

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