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The Fundamental Question - Rationality computer game design

Perhaps you can crib some gameplay ideas from the Phoenix Wright series, like was done with Socrates Jones: Pro Philosopher? Those games make pointing out fairly mundane logical or argumentation mis-steps pretty entertaining, and I can see how it might complement the idea of updating probabilities in a story-based scenario.

Meetup : [Boston] Using Causal Graphs to Understand Bias in the Medical Literature

Agreed.. I'd love to see this or read an article on this topic. I have the Pearl book, but it's a bit dense for someone who doesn't have an in-depth background in statistics.

Initial Thoughts on Personally Finding a High-Impact Career

It's still a field where demand outstrips the supply in places, so it may be possible to just land one by knowing enough to answer questions in the interview. I know currently certain bustling communities such as Drupal are dying to land people.

However, it's certainly better to have experience, and what you can do on that front is contribute to an open source project. It's incredibly easy to do nowadays, and valid as resume-worthy experience.

Problems with Academia and the Rising Sea

I've put a lot of thought into trying to improve the aggregation of science data in order to quickly determine the legitimacy of any particular paper based on current knowledge. Ultimately, it seems to me, aggregation isn't viable because so much of the data is simply inaccessible (as you mentioned, accessibility is more a function of being new and exciting, whereas 'vanilla' building blocks such as replications may not be publicly accessible at all).

Ultimately, I think, the incentive structure has to change, and that's difficult because when only positives are rewarded, it has the side effect of incentivizing the reporting of false positives, and disincentivizing putting in the work of reporting negatives (which are still useful!). Ultimately, I think the only viable ways to change the system are by convincing the grant providers to enforce certain guidelines. If they are as convinced as to the usefulness of non-positive and replication results as the rest of us, they can enforce reporting all results, and increase the rewards for people to do replications. Then once all that data is publicly available, you can do wonders with it.

I'd welcome other ideas, as like I said, I've been putting a lot of thought into it. I'd love to put together a system that lets people easily see the replication status and legitimacy of a paper (or scientific statement supported or opposed by various papers, which would be useful to the public at large), and I think I've puzzled out how, we just need to incentivize the people doing the research to release the data that will populate it.

2012 Less Wrong Census/Survey

The doctor recommending medicine one threw me. Why not offer more than one, explain that one gives the best bang for the buck, but also let them decide whether the $350 for 30 headaches is still worth it despite being an increased cost per headache prevented. I can easily imagine a rational scenario where 20 less headaches is still worth increased payment per headache prevented, especially if it costs you wages at your theoretical low-income job..

How about testing our ideas?

Also excepting the ones whose consciousness wasn't uploaded into homicidal testing machines, of course.

How about testing our ideas?

I'm curious as to hear an example or two of what sort of experiments you had in mind (and the models they'd be testing) when writing this article. A brief, none-too-thorough attempt on my own part kept hitting a couple of walls. I agree with your sentiment that simple surveys may fall prey to sampling biases, and I wonder how we would acquire the resources to conduct experiments methodologically sound enough that their results would be significant, the way CFAR is doing them, with randomized controlled trials and the like.

Reinforcement Learning: A Non-Standard Introduction (Part 1)

Ah, so what we're really talking about here is situations where the world state keeps changing as the memory builds its model.. or even just a situation where the memory has an incomplete subset of the world information. Reading the second article's example, which makes the limitations of the memory explicit, I understand. I'd say the chess example is a bit misleading in this case, as the discrepancies between the memory and world are a big part of the discussion -- and as you said, chess is a perfect-information game.

Reinforcement Learning: A Non-Standard Introduction (Part 1)

I'm having a hard time understanding what the arrows from W-node to W-node and M-node to M-node represent in the chess example, given the premise that the world and memory states take turns changing.

If I understand correctly, W is the board state at the start of the player's turn, and M is the state of the memory containing the model of the board and possible moves/outcomes. W(t) is the state that precedes M(t), and likewise the action resulting from the completion of remodelling the memory at M(t), plus the opposing player's action, results in new world state W(t+1).

This interpretation seems to suggest a simple, linear, linked list of alternating W and M nodes instead of the idea that, for example, the W(t-1) node is the direct precursor to W(t). The reason being, it seems that one could generate W(t) simply from the memory model in M(t-1), regardless of what W(t-1) was.. and the same goes for M(t) and W(t-1).

Perhaps it's that the arrow from one W-node to another does not represent the causal/precursor relationship that a W-node to M-node arrow represents, but a different relationship? If so, what is that relationship? Sorry if this seems picky, but I do think that the model is causing some confusion as to whether I properly understand your point.

Decision Theories: A Semi-Formal Analysis, Part II

Good article, but as always a concrete example would be beneficial to comprehension.

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