Douglas_Knight's Comments

What is Life in an Immoral Maze?
in Moral Mazes there are at least 25 (!) levels of management

Exponential growth makes that implausible.

In the US military there are 25 ranks, but a hierarchy of half that depth with a branching factor of 3. Commissioned officer ranks correspond pretty well to the hierarchy, but there are only 3 levels of enlisted hierarchy below them.

You seem to be referring to this passage:

A weeding-out process takes place among the lower ranks of managers during the first several years of their experience. The early careers of promising young managers are highly variegated; the more promise managers show, the more probations they must undergo. Take, for example, the case of a young man newly graduated in 1965 from one of the South’s leading universities. He joined Weft Corporation and spent the next two years in the company’s production management training program. Then he became a first-line supervisor on the third shift at a small mill. Shortly thereafter, he was promoted to the night superintendent’s job of that mill and given overall responsibility for the night shift. After six months, he became a department head for weaving operations in another mill. After another six months, he was assigned to head a larger weaving department in yet another plant. After still another six months, he became assistant plant manager at a medium-sized mill and kept that job for four years. Then he moved to a still larger mill in the same capacity for another two years. Then he became plant manager of a medium-sized mill for two years. Finally, he was named one of two group managers with six plant managers reporting to him. At the age of 36, he has reached grade 20, the “breaking point” on a scale of 29, placing him in the top 12.17 percent of management in Weft Corporation with, he hopes, a clear shot at becoming vice-president of manufacturing. Similarly variegated careers are evident for young marketing and sales managers in Weft’s northern offices. In Alchemy Inc., whether in sales, marketing, manufacturing, or finance, the “breaking point” in the hierarchy is generally thought to be grade 13 out of 25 or the top 8.5 percent of management.

The low levels of these ranks probably provide for recognition of non-management employees, like the enlisted and warrant ranks in the US military. With a branching factor of 2, top 12% would mean 3 levels up from the bottom, not 20. With 9 levels above above 20, a total of 13 levels of managers. The other company, perhaps 15. But probably the top of the hierarchy is not actually 9 or 12 ranks, but sparser than they suggest, not as sparse as the lower ranks, but not completely full like the US military.

Could someone please start a bright home lighting company?

What do you want?

Do you want to buy something for yourself, or do you want a company to change the world?

Yes, there is room for a better product, but I think that off-the-shelf products are pretty good and you should just get them. If you want to change the world, maybe you should just promote these existing products. In particular, for your short term needs, just do it.

I think that the right answer for most people and most purposes is Raemon's instructions, $300 for 300 watts, same total wattage as coelux. Why did you write this post already knowing about Raemon's instructions? What are they lacking? That they require installation? If you have 24 separate bulbs spread around the room, installation is unavoidable. Light strips may be a better solution, but they require even more installation.

Some people want different things. David Chapman seems to want to illuminate his desk, not his room, so he might not like Raemon's setup. If you want to minimize installation, you might want a single light. This leads to Ben and Ashen's suggestions. They probably aren't as nice as coelux, so, yes, it would be nice if someone made nicer versions (which should be possible). Ashen's outdoor floodlights probably have lousy CRI. Ben's corncob isn't the standard residential fixture, and thus required some assembly. Both products probably shine outwards to illuminate an area, rather than the coelux which is intended to mimic the sun through a window pushing light in a sharp line. This illusion is probably luxurious, but I'm skeptical that it is actually good for the goal.

I was going to follow up by saying that if you like the form factor of coelux, there are similar products on the market for maybe $2/watt, only twice as expensive as Raemon's setup. They aren't as bright as coelux, but you could get 5 or 10. There is the second product Ashen linked or light therapy boxes (apparently 72W) are probably a good option with full spectrum and good lenses. But then I read more I heard a lot of accusations of poor quality and fraud around light boxes, so I dunno.

CO2 Stripper Postmortem Thoughts

You asked for an expert consensus and I gave it to you. Naval researchers are the experts.

No, "experiments yield results in different directions" is not an accurate summary. Experiments with large interventions trump experiments with small interventions.

But, it's true, I left out the most convincing evidence, which is back of the envelope calculations with gross anatomy.

CO2 Stripper Postmortem Thoughts

When people say that ventilation helps them, I believe them. They might even be far on an axis of response to pollution. But how would they know that the particular pollutant they respond to is CO2? They should be cautious in assigning blame and trying specific interventions. Gwern points out that one of the studies that most impressed Paul about CO2 actually found larger effects from mold, which is a big problem in the foggy slums of Berkeley. In theory there are ways to isolate human pollution from house pollution, such as varying the number of roommates, but I doubt people are careful enough to disentangle that and CO2 isn't even the only human pollutant. [Added: but submarines are equally subject to all human pollutants, so that should limit the possibilities to the short list of what they scrub.]

Are submariners selected on that axis? I'm skeptical. In any event, the naval studies don't restrict to submariners.

Long-lasting Effects of Suspensions?

It would be nicer if there were more randomization, but it would also be nicer if more information were extracted from the few people who are randomized. For example, I know someone who participated in an RCT of breastfeeding/formula. It was aimed at a specific (acute, adverse) infant outcome. I'm not sure it even looked at other infant metrics, but it certainly did not have long-term follow-up, not even at 5 years. Not only did the study make a big investment in persuading the subjects for such little measurement, but it is now impossible to do a better experiment, because RCTs of breastfeeding are now considered unethical because of the damage their null results do to the authors' careers. (Similarly the Swedish and Australian twin registries are the right way to do twin studies.)

On the other hand, sometimes you can't randomize and you'd like to know how well you can do correlational studies. If your employer is so enthusiastic about experiments, maybe it apply that enthusiasm to itself and do an experiment to see how well its employees can do observational analysis?

CO2 Stripper Postmortem Thoughts

Well, who are the experts? Submarines routinely have CO2 levels much higher than even Berkeley group homes. Naval researchers do experiments with higher levels still, showing little effect. There seems to be an illegible LW consensus to the opposite, probably from people pretending to read this post. People praise Gwern for his quantity, but they don't actually read him.

Again, most research is about ventilation and is thus confounded by other pollutants. I don't usually speak up about this because most discussion of this doesn't depend on the CO2 hypothesis.

CO2 Stripper Postmortem Thoughts

Ventilation has the advantage that it dumps all pollutants, not just CO2. In fact, the premise that CO2 affects cognition is false.

The unexpected difficulty of comparing AlphaStar to humans

This is super tangential, but I think you're making a technical error here. It's true that poker is imperfect information and it's true that this makes it require more computational resources, which matches the main text, but not this comment. But does imperfect information suggest mixed strategies? Does optimal play in poker require mixed strategies? I see this slogan repeated a lot and I'm curious where you learned it. Was it in a technical context? Did you encounter technical justification for it?

Games where players move simultaneously, like rock-paper-scissors require mixed strategies, and that applies to SC. But I'm not sure that requires extra computational resources. Whether they count as "imperfect information" is subject of conflicting conventions. Whereas play alternates in poker. I suspect that this meme propagates because of a specific error. Imperfect information demands bluffing and people widely believe that bluffing is a mixed strategy. But it isn't. The simplest version of poker to induce bluffing is von Neumann poker, which has a unique (pure) Nash equilibrium in which one bets on a good hand or a bad hand and checks on a medium hand. I suspect that for poker based on a discrete deck that the optimal strategy is mixed, but close to being deterministic and mixed only because of discretization error.

Market Rate Food Is Luxury Food

Maybe this argument is a straw man. That is, maybe it's not accurately describing the arguments that people use. But that is a very different problem than saying this argument might be OK.

Market Rate Food Is Luxury Food

If the arguments are actually analogous, then this shows that one of them is wrong. Maybe there are important differences between food and housing, but if the argument doesn't mention them, it is wrong. It's that simple.

It is also striking that when people claim that there are differences and flail around looking for differences, the differences generally support the wrong side. It makes is pretty clear that they didn't have any belief about the topic.

Load More