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Yes, Virginia, You Can Be 99.99% (Or More!) Certain That 53 Is Prime

#necro, but yes. Longitudinal observation shows that the same people perform worse under pressure as amateurs, and better under pressure at the end.

Babble challenge: 50 ways of hiding Einstein's pen for fifty years
Answer by EricfOct 15, 202010

Assumptions: Evil Forces are a small cabal (20) people who will be searching for it, starting in a few months. They know you were the one who hid it, but are not willing to torture you. They can spend 50 years searching, but will then give up, and let you retrieve & sell it in peace.

  1. Bury it somewhere that won’t be randomly disturbed, and cannot be traced back to you (and make a map)
    1. An abandoned mine
    2. A patch of desert
    3. Inside a Glacier
    4. In an arbitrary grave
    5. In a dead body, buried in an arbitrary grave
    6. In someone’s garden, at least 6 feet down
    7. In the wall of an arbitrary root or wine cellar
    8. At the base of an old growth grape vine (since you know those aren’t going to get pulled up)
    9. Under the cobblestones of a newly paved street
    10. Given the time period, probably anywhere a little off the beaten path – 3 feet down, 6 feet away from a random road, and no-one would even know you were there.
  2. Have a trusted institution guard it
    1. Deposit it in a safety deposit box at a reputable bank. Probably in Switzerland.
    2. Entrust it to a church
    3. Have it guarded as a national treasure
    4. Give it to a friend who, gives it to a friend, who gives it to another who’s been messing around.
    5. Put it in a gold bar first, to enhance the security
  3. Tie it to a large piece of metal, lower it into a well on a magnent + very long string (to confirm that you can reach the bottom), pull it back up, and drop it in the well.
  4. Conceal it in a piece of construction (again, map needed)
    1. Inside an arbitrary attic
    2. Or Basement
    3. Make a brick with it inside, and install that brick in a wall somewhere
    4. Climb up a church in progress, and slip it in among the stones
    5. Inside a water pipe
    6. In a fence post
    7. Inside one of 6 identical busts of Napoleon
    8. In a wall
  5. Secretly Inter it with someone’s ashes in an urn
  6. Cut a hole in a citrus tree, insert pen, graft on a new branch to cover the hole
  7. Carve a hole in a rock, drop the pen in, place rock in an unassuming spot
  8. Cover pen with something un-digestible and feed it to a long lived animal like a Tortoise
  9. Slip it inside a family heirloom (not from your family)
  10. Put it somewhere very public and secure, like the entry to a police station, but secured so it can’t be stolen without a lot of work (locks/boxes etc)
  11. Put it inside a grandfather clock. Those don’t get disassembled, and are highly likely to remain in the same place for 50 years.
  12. Glue in some out-of-the-way place in a semi-public boiler room. Somewhere that doesn’t get cleaned.
  13. Stick it to the bottom of an ocean ship. It will get barnacled over before the ship comes back to port. Just keep an eye on it, and make sure you get to it before it gets scrapped
  14. Create a duplicate, hide it badly, and let it be stolen. Just keep the real one in a safe at your house.
  15. Keep the pen on you, and hide your own identity
    1. Go to some arbitrary colony and give them a fake name & change your appearance
    2. Live in the wilds of Canada
    3. Join the French Foreign Legion, or equivalent
    4. Murder someone and assume their identity
    5. Change your appearance in some dramatic way, like removing a leg
    6. Change your apparent gender
    7. Just go to a big city. No-one keeps track of every new resident, and there isn’t a photo of you for reference anyway.
  16. Put it on something that’s always moving, like a piece of an automatic loom, so it can’t be removed
  17. Give it to someone else to hide, with instructions that they should pass it on to someone you don’t know (have the map delivered back to you via delayed Western Union delivery)
  18. Mail it to your fake identity in a foreign country, pick it up and re-mail it ad-infinium.
  19. Carefully cut your leg open, and secrete it inside. Conceal scar with pants.
  20. Glue it to the ceiling. No one ever looks up when searching.
  21. In the spine of a random library book
  22. Dissasemble the pen, hide the component pieces in reasonable places. Re-assemble in 50 years.
  23. Replace one part of the pen with a new piece, but keep the old piece. Repeat until you have enough parts to create a second pen from the original parts. Repeat with both “original” pens. Each time one of your duplicates gets stolen, assemble a new “original” pen.
  24. Don’t worry about it. There’s nothing special about Mr. Einstein or the pen. If not him with that pen, someone else or a different writing implement would be used at about that time in history to develop those theories.
How much to worry about the US election unrest?
  1. Statements by a private, albeit famous and moderately popular, citizen are inherently different than statements from an elected official, especially the head of the executive branch.
  2. Statements about other people are inherently different than statements about the speaker.
  3. Is either side actually saying that they will "look closely at the results" or is that your interpretation of the actual statements?
How much to worry about the US election unrest?

"I can only lose due to shenanigans" and "maybe I'll just stay in office" are miles apart in terms of how troubling they are. One is a prediction about other people, and the other is a prediction about the speaker's future actions.

//of course, given the speaker of the second statement, I assign epsilon weight to it as evidence either way.

How much to worry about the US election unrest?

If Biden has a clear election night win, there might be local violence on the scale of Right Wing millitia groups attempting to take over locations (possibly successfully for a few months) a-la Cliven Bundy. There may be some violence, with casualties likely in the range of dozens nation-wide, but possibly reaching up to the hundreds in the 99.9th percentile worst case. 

If Biden wins, but not until all the votes are counted, probably double the above effects & risks.

If Biden gets more votes in enough states to have 270 electors, but some combination of lawsuits, direct violence, etc. by Republicans in various states leads to Trump "winning" then I would predict a substantial risk of direct violence by left-wing groups, perhaps 1% chance of Republican officeholders / operations being physically attacked in a sustained way. Likely a 75%+ chance of a dozen Republican election offices being damaged in violent protests nationwide.

If Trump actually gets more votes in enough states to have 270 electors, expect a continuation of current policy, risk, and violence, both in perpetrators and victims. 

Babble challenge: 50 ways to escape a locked room

 Break a vulnerable part of the room, primarily by carefully kicking it:

  1. Window Pane
  2. Window Frame
  3. Window Lock (kick the window open)
  4. Door Lock
  5. Door panel
  6. Door hinges
  7. Break through a wall by:
    1. Kicking a hole, and pulling it apart
    2. Scratching a hole over time
    3. Prying up a floorboard / molding and using it as a hammer/axe
    4. Drooling on it (and clawing away the water-logged material)
    5. Chopping it with your phone
    6. Cut it with zipper from Pants
  8. Start a Fire, using clothing fibers as tinder
    1. Sunlight and a lens from eyeglasses
    2. Rub two pieces of wood together (make a rope from pants for leverage)
    3. Overheat phone
    4. Disassemble phone and create short-circuit (look this up first)
    5. Metal on Metal to make sparks
  9. Learn lockpicking from youtube
  10. Pry up molding, use it to leverage open door or window.
  11. Live normally until someone investigates room
  12. Dig through the floor
  13. Dig up the floor to reach the ceiling, break through the roof
  14. Remove door hinges (using phone as a hammer & nails from construction as pitons)
  15. Rattle door continuously until friction wears away the latch
  16. Keep lock mechanism wet, until it rusts away
  17. Unscrew the locks with your fingernails
  18. Work out a bunch, then rip door from wall
  19. Play a loud sound from phone to attract attention
  20. Unlock the window from the inside and climb out
  21. Wake up from your dream
  22. Triangulate your location via GPS, and contact someone to come get you via:
    1. Make a youtube video
    2. Make a porn video
    3. Send an e-mail
    4. Make a phone call
    5. Send a text message
    6. Post on Facebook
    7. Post on Instagram etc.
    8. Upload a file to a shared Dropbox account
    9. Tweet
    10. Make a comment on their blog
    11. Make a death threat against the President
    12. Send a message in a shared mobile game
    13. Write a review on their product or mobile app
    14. Change your outgoing voicemail
    15. Join a Zoom call
    16. Activate “find my phone” feature, assuming you have a shared account with someone
    17. Order something from Amazon
    18. Contact your home Alexa
    19. Change the settings on your home smart thermostat to send a coded message
    20. Start a GoFundMe
Babble challenge: 50 ways to escape a locked room

This +1. There are all sorts of reasonable or unreasonable ways out of a room, but once you've listed "Break the wall open" does it really count to add "Scratch a hole in the wall," "Use your Phone to hammer a hole in the wall," "Kick a hole in the wall" etc. Similarly, once you have "Call for help" does it really count to add "Call the police," "Call a friend," "E-mail for help," "Use Facebook for help," etc.

I think more specific challenges help with that (eg "get past this border wall" or "contact your business partner, who is trying to find you") helps with not making 50 different iterations of "open a hole in the wall" seem like cheating.

  1. Predicting that your home is situated somewhere you will be able to live and work in the future. Or that you will be able to sell it at a good price if this is ever not the case.

//for many people, this is close enough to the case. What's the statistic: 75% of everyone never moves more than an hour away from where they were born (and 33% never even go more than one hour away)? Something like that.

  1. Predicting that the country/city your home is in will preserve your property rights over a long period of time. Considering that, with very few exceptions, property rights were arbitrarily taken away from people in almost all countries in Europe, South America, Asia, and Africa over the last 80 years, this is a fairly large gamble.

//is this actually true for individual homeowners, though? This is a risk for owning a large capital investment, but my understanding is that individuals generally got to keep (or re-assert ownership of) their personal residence despite political turmoil.

  1. Predicting that you will be able to afford insurance for your home at all times and that the insurance companies will payout in case of a disaster.

//again, this is kind of a tail risk that would be correlated with a loss of value in stocks, bonds, and any other wealth instrument outside of bullets and rations.

  1. Predicting that you will want to live in the area your home is in for a long time, sufficient enough to account for the large overhead of moving when one is buying as opposed to renting.

//isn't this the same thing you said in point #1?

  1. Predicting that your home investment is wise enough to beat a conservative investment strategy plus the cost of rent.

//As mentioned in other comments, the cost of rent will, in the long term, equal the cost of ownership. In the short term, owners have a more constant expense, and are protected from sudden large increases in rent, should the area become more popular. Also, you can borrow against the asset at rates lower than the long-term average market gains, if you are treating it as an investment (though, in most places, home values are mostly constant, rising at around the general rate of inflation, in which case it's not really an investment)


In conclusion, more than 63% of people wanting to stay in the same place for an extended (7+ years) period of time, and lock in their housing cost (which is the single largest line item in anyone's budget) for that time, seems completely reasonable. Some percentage of renters would prefer to own, but don't have the assets (cash + earning capacity) to acquire a residence; some percentage of people are very mobile, or in an uncertain position, and don't want to be tied down to a medium-term contract, because they might need or want to move for any number of reasons.

The Darwin Game

Reading the other's source code is a bigger change (actually, a superset of auto-recognizing self) It actually makes coordinating trivial and enforceable, since you can just check for the correct behavior & password before cooperating. And if you can run your opponent's source code...

Muting on Group Calls

The headset provided by my work has a huge button panel on the cord, and can be muted with a physical button on that cord, which then lights up. This makes it very easy to hit the button and start speaking, rather than fumbling around with the interface to find the un-mute.

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