It's a small upfront cost for gradual long-term benefit. Nothing in that says one necessarily outweighs the other. I don't think there's anything more to be had from this example beyond "hyperbolic discounting."
I think it's simpler than this: renaming it is a small upfront cost for gradual long-term benefit. Hyperbolic discounting kicks in. Carmack talks about this in his QuakeCon 2013, saying "humans are bad at integrating small costs over time": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1PhArSujR_A
But, bigger picture, code quality is not about things like local variable naming. This is Mistake #4 of the 7 Mistakes that Cause Fragile Code: https://jameskoppelcoaching.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/7mistakes-2ndedition.pdf
I read/listened to Lean Startup back in 2014. Reading it helped me realize many of the mistakes I had made in my previous startup, mistakes I made even though I thought I understood the "Lean startup" philosophy by osmosis.
Indeed, "Lean Startup" is a movement whose terminology has spread much faster than its content, creating a poisoned well that inoculates people against learning
For example, the term "minimum viable product" has been mutated to have a meaning emphasizing the "minimum" over the "product," making it harder to spread the ac... (read more)
1. What is the difference between learning and validated learning?
Validated learning is learning that has been tested empirically against users/the marketplace.
2. True or false: "According to the author, a startup with exponential growth in metrics like revenue and number of customers is doing well." Explain your answer.
False. This is only true if those metrics imply a path of long-term sustainable profitability. If the startup in question is Github, it probably does. If it's Groupon.....
3. Finish the sentence: "almost every lean startup techni... (read more)
Causal inference has long been about how to take small assumptions about causality and turn them into big inferences about causality. It's very bad at getting causal knowledge from nothing. This has long been known.For the first: Well, yep, that's why I said I was only 80% satisfied.
For the second: I think you'll need to give a concrete example, with edges, probabilities, and functions. I'm not seeing how to apply thinking about complexity to a type causality setting, where it's assumed you have actual probabilities on co-occurrences.
This post is a mixture of two questions: "interventions" from an agent which is part of the world, and restrictions
The first is actually a problem, and is closely related to the problem of how to extract a single causal model which is executed repeatedly from a universe in which everything only happens once. Pearl's answer, from IIRC Chapter 7 of Causality, which I find 80% satisfying, is about using external knowledge about repeatability to consider a system in isolation. The same principle gets applied whenever a researcher tries to shield an experiment ... (read more)
Thought I'd share an anecdote that didn't make it into the article: on how doing something yourself can make you a better outsourcer.
About 6 months ago, I went shopping for a logo for one of my projects. It helped greatly that I've spent a lot of time studying visual design myself.
I made a document describing what I wanted, including a mood board of other logos. I showed it to a logo design specialist recommended by a friend. He said "That's the best logo recquisition doc I've seen, and I've seen a lot."
I also showed it to the designer I've been working wi... (read more)
Oh, on the contrary: I think this article misses several things that are quite important (or were brushed under a single sentence like "[main principal/agent problems] are communication and risk." Reason: emphasis on things fewer readers were likely to consider.
So the costs you're describing are indeed real and brushed off to corner. I think both of these fall under transaction costs, and #2 also under centralization and overhead. For #2, I think you mean something other than what "externality" means to me (a cost specifically born by a non-party to a transaction) --- maybe second-order cost?
Thanks! This is good.
It's not a physical good, but I had also been thinking that most of the price of renting a venue on the open market is trust (that you won't mess up their space; whether they can give you the keys vs. needing someone to let you in), followed by coordination. Hence, why having a friend let you use their office's conference room on a weekend to do an event might cost $0, while renting such a space might cost $1000.
To clarify: You're not saying the wedding tax is because of insurance costs, as the article is asking about, right?
I have a number of issues with this post.
First, as others have mentioned, opponents are very much not equal. Further, timing is important: certain trades you should be much more or less likely to take near the end of the game, for example.Second, I don't think it's valid to look at expected values when all you care about is rank. Expectation is very much a concept for when you care about absolute amounts.
Third, which perhaps sums everything up: I don't see a valid notion of utility / utility maximization for board games, other than perhaps "pro... (read more)
Did not know about the answer/comment distinction! Thanks for pointing that out.
Before I dig deeper, I'd like to encourage you to come bring these questions to Formal Methods for the Informal Engineer ( https://fmie2021.github.io/ ), a workshop organized by myself and a few other researchers (including one or two more affiliated with LessWrong!) specifically dedicated to helping build collaborations to increase the adoption of formal methods technologies in the industry. Since it's online this year, it might be a bit harder to have these deep open-ended co... (read more)
It is already possible to build an embedded language inside of Coq which requires arbitrary security proofs for all executable code. It's theoretically possible to make those proofs guard against all known side channels, including, theoretically, hardware-based side channels such as Row Hammer.Are you asking about which kinds of attacks can't be stopped by improving software? Or are you asking about the theoretical limits of PL technology? The latter question is not so interesting without more constraints: as stated above, they're basically unbounded.
Okay. I think you're saying this is extortion because Walmart's goal is to build a reputation for only agreeing to deals absurdly favorable to them.
If the focus on building a reputation is the distinguishing factor, then how does that square with the following statement: "it is not useful for me to have a credible reputation for following up on brinksmanship threats?"
I see. In that case, I don't think the Walmart scenario is extortion. It is not to the detriment of Walmart to refuse to buy from a supplier who will not meet their demands, so long as they can find an adequate supplier who will.
I'd really appreciate a more rigorous/formal/specific definition of both. I'm not seeing what puts the Walmart example in the "extortion" category, and, without a clear distinction, this post dissolves.
Very interesting post. I was very prepared to praise it with "this draws some useful categories for me," but it began to get less clear as I tried more examples. And I'm still trying to come up with a distinction between brinksmanship and extortion. I've thought about the payoff matrices (they look the same), and whether "unilateral attack vs. not" is a distinguishing factor (I don't think so). I still can't find a clear distinction.
(1) You say that releasing nude photos is in the blackmail category. But who's the audience?
(2) For n=1, m lar... (read more)
I tried playing this in 2009 at a math summer program. It scared a lot of people away, but I got a small group to join in. The scoring algorithm was rather questionable, but the game of competitive Fermi estimates was fun.
I can't claim to have improved much at rationality or estimates, but, ever since then, I remember that, to the question "How many liters of water are there in the ocean," the answer "1 mole of liters" is not the mark of a deceiver, but is actually relatively close, being only 1 order of magnitude too low.
If I ever... (read more)
Another example for your list: Altneuland catalyzed the Zionist movement that led to the creation of Israel. The city of Tel Aviv is named after the book. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Old_New_Land
Was just reading through my journal, and found that I had copied this quote. I think you'll find it to be of interest re: teaching recursion.
From “Computing Science: Achievements and Challenges” (1999):
“I learned a second lesson in the 60s, when I taught a course on programming to sophomores, and discovered to my surprise that 10% of my audience had the greatest difficulty in coping with the concept of re, cursive procedures. I was surprised because I knew that the concept of recursion was not ... (read more)
I've noticed that the Reveal Culture examples / Tell Culture done right resemble greatly the kinds of communication advocated in the many strands of conflict/communication training I've taken. Connecting your requests to needs, looking for interests instead of positions, seeing the listener's perspective, etc.
For instance, the Tell Culture example example "I'm beginning to find this conversation aversive" is quite close to the example from my training "I notice I'm having a reaction," except that it's close... (read more)
First, I'll encourage you to have a look at material on what I thought this post was going to be about from the title: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Counterfactual_conditional . I know about this subject primarily from http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.44.3738&rep=rep1&type=pdf (which is more concrete/mathematical than the Wikipedia article, as it's written by computer scientists rather than philosophers).
Second: If I'm understanding this correctly in my sleep deprived state, you're actually wo... (read more)
I was 12 or so when I first studied pointers. I did not get them at all back then.
Thanks for the explanation. I accept your usage of "abstraction" as congruent with the common use among software engineers (although I have other issues with that usage)). Confusingly, your hierarchy is a hierarchy in g required, not a hierarchy in the abstractions themselves.
I am well-read in Joel Spoelsky, and my personal experience matches the anecdotes you share. On the other hand, I have also tutored some struggling programmers to a high level. I still find the claim of a g-floor incredible. This kind of inference feels like claiming the ins... (read more)
You seem to be making a few claims: (1) that these skills require an increasing amount of 1-dimensional intelligence (2) that one cannot do lower-indexed things without doing higher-indexed ones and (3) that there is something fundamental about this.
You obviously do not mean this literally, for there are plenty of people who understand recursion but not pointers (i.e.: intro Python students), and plenty of programmers who have never touched Python.
First, what is an abstraction?
As someone who recently wrote a paper involving Cousot-style abstract interpret... (read more)
John is correct that do() is not imperative assignment. It's a different effect called "lazy dynamic scope."
do() is described fully in our paper on formal semantics for a language with counterfactuals, http://www.jameskoppel.com/files/papers/causal_neurips2019.pdf . The connection with dynamic scope is covered in the appendix, which is not yet online.
In this possible world, it is the case that "A" returns Y upon being given those same observations. But, the output of "A" when given those observations is a fixed computation, so you now need to reason about a possible world that is logically incoherent, given your knowledge that "A" in fact returns X. This possible world is, then, a logical counterfactual: a "possible world" that is logically incoherent.
Simpler solution: in that world, your code is instead A', which is exactly like A, except that it returns Y ... (read more)
Hi, I'm a Ph. D. student at MIT in programming languages.
Your choice of names suggests that you're familiar with existing tactics languages. I don't see anything stopping you from implementing this as a library in Ltac, the tactics language associated with Coq.
I'm familiar with a lot of DSLs (here's umpteen of them: https://github.com/jeanqasaur/dsl-syllabus-fall-2016/blob/master/README.md ). I've never heard of one designed before they had an idea what the engine would be.
E.g.: you can write a language for creating variants o... (read more)
Something you learn pretty quickly in academia: don't trust the demos. Systems never work as well when you select the inputs freely (and, if they do, expect thorough proof). So, I wouldn't read too deeply into this yet; we don't know how good it actually is.
They claim beating records on a range of standard tests (such as the Winograd schema), which is not something you can cheat by cherry-picking, assuming they are honest about the results.
Vis-a-vis selecting inputs freely: OpenAI also included a large dump of unconditioned text generation in their github repo.
The vast majority of discussion in this area seems to consist of people who are annoyed at ML systems are learning based on the data, rather than based on the prejudices/moral views of the writer.
While many writers may take this flawed view, there's also a very serious problem here.
Decision-making question: Let there be two actions A and ~A. Our goal is to obtain outcome G. If P(G | A) > P(G | ~A), should we do A?
The correct answer is “maybe.” All distributions of P(A,G) are consistent with scenarios in which doing A is the right answer, and scen... (read more)
And Paul Graham in Beating the Averages: http://www.paulgraham.com/avg.html
I think you hit the kernel of the argument in the first paragraph: If you have an obscure pet cause, then chances are it's because you do have some special knowledge about the problem. The person visiting a random village might not, but the locals do, and hence this is a reason why local charity can be effective, particularly if you live in a remote area where the problems are not quantified (and are hence probably not reading this).
Put that in your post! I got what you're saying way better after reading that.
I'm confused about whether you're talking about "learning things specifically to solve a problem" (which I've seen called "pull-based learning"), or "learning things by doing projects" (i.e.: project-based learning). The former differs from the "waterfall method" ("push-based learning") only in the sequence and selection: it's just the difference between doing a Scala tutorial because you want to learn Scala, vs. because you just got put on a project that uses Scala (and hence you can sk... (read more)
It's more like the Crockford book -- a set of best practices. We use a fairly functional style without a lot of moving parts that makes Java very pleasant to work with. You will not find a SingletonFactoryObserverBridge at this company.
Yep. The first thing we do is have a conversation where we look for the 6 company values. Another of them is "commitment," which includes both ownership and grit.
You mean, a lot of cool mathematicians are eastern European. But Terry Tao and Shinichi Mochizuki are not.
Man, this is that thing I was talking about earlier when someone takes a colloquial phrase that sounds like a universal quantifier and interprets it as literally a universal quantifier.
Chris Olah and I (Jimmy Koppel) are both Thiel Fellows and avid Less Wrongers. We'd be happy to answer any questions about the program.
I know at least four people who started college by age 15. They're not "kid" geniuses anymore though -- the youngest is 16 and slowly going through college part-time, while the oldest is in his 30s and a full math professor at Arizona.
I don't know about the upbringing of the other three, but one attended a program where taking classes mutliple grade-levels ahead is the norm (though no-one else learned calculus in 3rd grade), and attended Canada/USA Mathcamp during the summers of his undergrad.
I second the Olympiads. Terry Tao famously represented Australia at the IMO at age 10, so he's definitely old enough.
With a sufficiently strong player, Arkham Horror is a one player game which seven people play.
There is a very healthy (and mathematical) subdiscipline of software engineering, applied programming languages. My favorite software-engineering paper, Type-Based Access Control in Data-Centric Systems, comes with a verified proof that, in the system it presents, data-access violations (i.e.: privacy bugs) are impossible.
This is my own research area ( http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~aldrich/plaid/ ), but my belief that this was a healthy part of a diseased discipline is a large part of the reason I accepted the position.
Yes, but the point is that we are learning features from empirical observations, not using some magic deduction system that our computers don't have access to. That may only be one bit of information, but it's a very important bit. This skips over the mysterious part in the exact same way that "electrical engineering" doesn't answer "How does a CPU work?" -- it tells you where to look to learn more.
I know far less about empirical mathematics than about logic. The only thing along these lines I'm familiar with is Douglas Lenat's Automat... (read more)
We form beliefs about mathematics the same way we form beliefs about everything else: heuristic-based learning algorithms. We typically accept things based on intuition and inductive inference until trained to rely on proof instead. There is nothing stopping a computer from forming mathematical beliefs based on statistical inference rather than logical inference.
Have a look at experimental mathematics or probabilistic number theory for some related material.
Computers can prove everything about integers that we can. I don't see a problem here.
The argument wasn't specific to ZFC or HOL, it was intended to apply to any system that can have a proof checker.
The argument wasn't specific to ZFC or HOL, it was intended to apply to any system that can have a proof checker.
Pointing out the Gödelian limitations of all systems with recursively enumerable axioms doesn't seem like much of criticism of the system of nth-order logic I mentioned. Now I have less of an idea of what you're trying to say.
By the way, I think he's using "full model" to mean "standard model." Presumably, the standard integers are the standard model that satisfies the Peano axioms, while nonstandard integers are any other... (read more)
If I understand correctly, you are saying that higher order logic cannot prove all theorems about the integers that ZFC can. That's a very uninteresting statement. Since higher order logic was proven consistent* with ZFC, it is strictly weaker. Second order logic, is, of course, strictly weaker than 4th order logic, which is strictly weaker than 6th order logic, and so on, and is thus much weaker than higher-order logic.
I've never heard it claimed that second-order logic has a unique model of the standard integers. Actually, I've never heard of the standar... (read more)
Proofs in second-order logic work the exact same way as proofs in first-order logic: You prove a sentence by beginning with axioms, and construct the sentence using inference rules. In first-order logic, you have individuals, functions (from individuals to individuals), terms, and predicates (loosely speaking, functions from individuals to truth values), but may only quantify over individuals. In second-order logic, you may also quantify over predicates and functions. In third-order logic, you add functions of functions of individuals, and, in fourth-order... (read more)
I used Duolingo for a few hours on its first day. (I used to TA for Luis, which helps for getting private invites, at least by knowing to sign up immediately.)
I've basically just gone through passing out of German lessons. This basically consists of taking a 20 question test, in which I translate sentences like "The woman drinks with her cat." and pray I don't make typos on three questions and have to start over. Except that all too often I give correct translations, but their checker isn't attuned to the flexibilities of German word ordering, or... (read more)
I think a lot of people get put off because Andrew Hsu is first in the alphabet. A lot of them barely come up in Google searches (save for the Fellowship itself).