All of Jakeness's Comments + Replies

I think this post can be modified, without much effort, to defend any pseudo-cult, or even a cheesy movie.

if you decline to condemn them to death, how are they different from other “residents” in the distant future?

Probably because some are more real and others are less so.

Can you explain in more detail what you mean by this?

It's pretty reasonable to care about the live people you know more than about some from potential future generations.

Has it been demonstrated to be safe over a long period of time?

How can somebody (without access to a lab) practically implement that technique?

The hardware is pretty cheap.

I suppose I would not be failing an empirical test, but I would be going against the well established law of conservation of mass and energy, and we can conclude I am wrong with >99% certainty.

To prevent us from getting too hooked on the analogy and back to my original question, if there is a theory (Bohm) that cannot pass or fail an experimental test but does go against a well established principle (locality), why should we give it a second glance? (Again, not a rhetorical question.)

Precisely my point. The Law Of Conservation Of Energy is only well-established - empirically speaking - to hold within the observable universe. The Law Of Conservation Of Energy That I Can See is, of course, more complex, and there's no reason to privileged the hypothesis - as long as you have some way of assigning probabilities to things you can't observe. Well, the Official LW Position (as endorsed by Eliezer Yudkowsky) is that you shouldn't. And, honestly, that makes a lot of sense. Some people, however, are determined to argue that the whole question is somehow meaningless or impossible to answer.

The analogy is hand-waving. If the spacecraft has gone over the cosmological horizon, how did you ever conclude that it exists in the first place? Such a conclusion would only be possible if you observed the spacecraft before it crossed over. In other words, it passed an experimental test.

You have a spaceship. You believe that it will cease to exist if it passes the cosmological horizon. What empirical test are you failing?

That didn't really answer the question. Can you give a context-specific answer?

I believe the traditional example is a spacecraft passing over the cosmological horizon. We cannot observe this spacecraft, so the belief "things passing over the cosmological horizon cease to exist" cannot be experimentally proved or disproved. And yet, if there are large numbers of people on such a craft, their continued survival might mater a great deal to us. If we believe they will die, we will choose not to send them - which might impose heavy costs due to i.e. overpopulation. The analogy to many-worlds seems obvious - if true, it would mean the existence of people we cannot experimentally verify. This could have implications for, say, the value of creating new minds, because they'll already exist somewhere else.

If interpretations cannot pass or fail an experimental test, what purpose do they serve?

(Not a rhetorical question; genuinely curious.)

You might value something you can't always see.
They give you an excuse to not bite the bullet and accept the math as the way the universe actually is.

And yes, Bohm is non-local, which you could say is a problem... or you could say it explains why quantum mechanics is different from classical mechanics.

I̶'̶m̶ ̶n̶o̶t̶ ̶s̶a̶y̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶B̶o̶h̶m̶ ̶i̶n̶t̶e̶r̶p̶r̶e̶t̶a̶t̶i̶o̶n̶ ̶i̶s̶ ̶w̶r̶o̶n̶g̶ ̶(̶b̶e̶c̶a̶u̶s̶e̶ ̶I̶'̶m̶ ̶t̶o̶o̶ ̶i̶n̶e̶x̶p̶e̶r̶i̶e̶n̶c̶e̶d̶ ̶i̶n̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶f̶i̶e̶l̶d̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶s̶a̶y̶)̶,̶ ̶b̶u̶t̶ I do not see how the above statement can be used to privilege Bohm over any other theory. If anything, shouldn't its non-locality lower our priors on its correctness?


Those two concepts have some overlap. Why should we use our energy trying to accomplish something that many have failed? Do we have good reason to discard the validity of their efforts? Are there good reasons to think our particular abilities are better suited to the task? Are we going to make some incremental progress that others can build on?

I would somewhat agree with this if the phrase "making mistakes" was removed. People generally have poor reasoning skills and make non-optimal choices >99% of the time. (Yes, I am including myself and you, the reader, in this generalization.)

I don't see how what you have said necessitates the "downfall" of science. It seems to me that it only suggests scientists should look at their theories as "the best possible explanation at the current time, which will likely be altered or proven incorrect in the future," rather than the usual "this is right, everything else is wrong." But we already know that this is an improvement everyone should be making to their thought-processes; here scientists are being singled out.

It would be appreciated if someone pointed out flaws in what I have said.

I can't speak for him, but I developed below-average social curiosity after I realized that people usually talk about things that aren't really interesting.

Under normal social circumstances, I no longer attempt to correct another person's belief by telling them how it is wrong and stating mine. If somebody makes a statement of questionable accuracy, I ask questions to determine how they came to the conclusion. This not only forces the person to consciously justify themselves and perhaps change their mind on their own, but allows for me to collect potential good arguments against my contrary belief. Conversations in general become more interesting and less hostile while following this protocol.

Interesting. I'm going to try to look out for that from here on.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but you can avoid most (all minus epsilon) of the exhaust fumes be keeping your windows closed and recirculating air from the vents. Commuters should be more concerned with having a car accident. AFAIK, people discount the relatively high risk of death and serious injury resulting from traffic accidents.

I find that if I keep the vents closed on for long enough, then I start to feel somewhat sleepy and don't notice it. This is a bad thing to happen while driving. I suspect that it may be caused by consuming oxygen faster than the imperfectly sealed vents are letting more oxygen in; the symptoms vanish quickly if I restore access to external air, either by opening the vents or opening the window.

Why not purchase an air mattress or a pull-out couch?

Now that the blog has been made private, could you provide a summary of her claims?

It would have been much easier before the blog was made private! (Looking around, apparently that happened over a year ago.) I think this [] will give a better impression than one that I can build from my memory. The basic takeaway I recall was that, to a cryomedical technician, the cryonics culture looked like one of wishful thinking, incompetence, and corruption. It looks like Melody is still posting [] on LW, though infrequently.

What time does the Sunday meet up start/finish?

What exactly is meant by the phrase "LW-style rationality?"

It simply means what cognitive scientists mean by "rationality", as opposed to the everyday meaning of "rationality", which is something like "analytical thinking". You can read about the kind of "rationality" that the Center For Applied Rationality teaches here.

Jargon/concepts for one: there are a lot of Less Wrong-specific terms and concept clusters that aren't found in the cognitive science literature. To a degree, associating rationality with existential risk, AI, cryonics, etc–not everyone on LW endorses these, but they are talked about.

Thanks for posting this. I always enjoy these "in-practice" oriented posts, as I feel they help me check if I truly understand the concepts I learn here, in a similar way that example problems in textbooks check if I know how to correctly apply the material I just read.

For 1, I took it as meaning having a belief in some form of soul, afterlife, or karma.

But I absolutely believe in karma. I guess that makes me spiritual. The things you find out about yourself eh?

Just took the survey. Out of curiosity, why is it ancient tradition to upvote for this?

During the part of the survey where you describe your gender and sexual orientation, I thought it might be a good idea to have another question asking to rate your libido on a numbered scale. Perhaps also another question asking your romantic disposition, as it is possible to be asexual but not aromantic.

Yes I was wanting for a libido rate question too.

Out of curiosity, why is it ancient tradition to upvote for this?

The underlying reasons are set forth in the Sequences, as you'd expect. :)

How can you be sure you aren't being judged?

Clarify that to "people don't display all the usual behaviours of judging someone, i.e sharing looks and smirking with each other, avoiding me afterwards, etc." Maybe they go on to judge me behind my back, but I've seen no reflection on my overall social standing...except that I've possibly developed more of a reputation since then, in the sense that I went from being semi-invisible to fairly interesting.

I would like to come Sunday, but I have never been to a meetup before. What should I expect it to be like?

Me too, I'm far from vocal but I'd be very interested in coming along on sunday.
Usually meetups have some kind of presentation, topic or activity. This particular one will mostly be free-form mingling, getting to know a lot of interesting people and the projects they are working on. There'll be a bit of a "Developing New Years Resolutions for rationalists" subtheme, but rather than try and get an entire room to talk about it at once it'll be more encouraged as a conversational prompt.

I used to feel exactly the same way you described, but towards everyone apart from very close friends and immediate family members. It's a horrible feeling, and a definite social handicap. At some point, I simply stopped caring and began to act myself around everyone. If they feel uncomfortable, then they can find a way to deal with it. If I am boring them, they are probably boring me as well, so I do not see why it should be up to me to resolve the issue. It does not benefit me in any way to hobble my personality to be "less awkward," and in most cases I feel that doing so will only make the situation worse.

I've recently noticed I too will go to great lengths to avoid imposing on another person. Even if the person has offered something to me, I will turn it down. I've assumed I do this either because 1) I do not want to owe a debt to anyone, no matter how small, or 2) I want to feel as self-sufficient as possible, which is a notable subset of 3) a general lack of confidence.

On a related note, I don't feel imposed on when another asks something of me; most of the time I am glad to help. However, it annoys me to great lengths when I am asked to do a simple task that I know the imposer could have done on their own.

After I first read this article about a year ago, I set out to be more honest in all my conversations. (At this point in time it has become a part of my persona and I no longer do it consciously.) There are a few things I've noticed since I made the switch:

  • It is easier for me to think clearly during social events. I suspect this is because I no longer have to generate lies and keep track of all of them.

  • I have become more outgoing, although undoubtedly more socially awkward. Occasionally, a person will be shocked at how carelessly I reveal something con

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I am like this. It occasionally creates a false note in a conversation, but for the most part it doesn't harm my relations with other people...and it feels good to realize that people don't actually judge me for the things I might be judging myself for.

On what I suspect to be a related side note, I notice that while in math class, I quickly lose interest in solving a problem if I already know that I know how to solve it.

Too far away for me. Maybe next time...

He was being sarcastic.

Would someone be kind enough to give me a brief description of what happens at these meet ups?