johnlawrenceaspden

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Discussion with Eliezer Yudkowsky on AGI interventions

So, is it now the consensus opinion round here that we're all dead in less than twenty years? (Sounds about right to me, but I've always been a pessimist...)

Discussion with Eliezer Yudkowsky on AGI interventions

Anyone up for creating thousands of clones of von Neumann and raising them to think that AI alignment is a really important problem? I'd trust them over me!

Discussion with Eliezer Yudkowsky on AGI interventions

An excellent video. But in my traditional role as "guy who is not embarrassed to ask stupid questions", I have a nitpick:

I didn't instantly see why the expected utility satisficer would turn itself into a maximiser.  

After a few minutes of thinking I've got as far as: 

Out of all the packets I could send, sending something that is a copy of me (with a tiny hack to make it a maximiser) onto another computer will create an agent which (since I am awesome) will almost certainly acquire a vast number of stamps. 

Which runs into a personal-identity-type problem: 

*I'm* an agent. If my goal is to acquire a fairly nice girlfriend, then the plan "create a copy of me that wants the best possible girlfriend", doesn't really help me achieve my goal. In fact it might be a bit of a distraction.

I'm pretty sure there's a real problem here, but the argument in the video doesn't slam the door on it for me. Can anyone come up with something better?

Discussion with Eliezer Yudkowsky on AGI interventions

And in your defence, chathamroom.com does seem pretty cool.

Discussion with Eliezer Yudkowsky on AGI interventions

Then you have hit a target you couldn't yourself see, which is high genius indeed. 

I'm a Brit, and jokes at funerals are appropriate and necessary, even if the funeral is one's own. But this is surely not one of those transatlantic things? Even in Tarantino movies the doomed go out with a wisecrack.

Discussion with Eliezer Yudkowsky on AGI interventions

Finally, some humour in what has up to now been a pretty grim read! And I've thought we were all doomed for the last ten years.

A Semitechnical Introductory Dialogue on Solomonoff Induction

We can also consider it as a probability distribution over infinite sequences

 

Surely, 'over finite sequences'?

Great Negotiation MOOC on Coursera

That would probably be true of Yale's maths course, if they started from the beginning. It probably is true of Yale's computer science course.

Great Negotiation MOOC on Coursera

I've been a freelance my whole life, am often involved in negotiations of one sort or another and I have learned interesting things from just the first week of this course. I am sure they will come in handy in future.

I agree that a smart ten year old could probably follow it, but that's the sign of something being really well explained, not that it's trivial. There's actually some deepness here.

I intend to do the rest of it. If anyone in Cambridge, UK is interested, get in touch (07943) 155029 and let's do the two-man exercises in person over coffee.

The Thyroid Madness : Core Argument, Evidence, Probabilities and Predictions

Hi Jane, in short, my plan to fix a disease I'd made up myself by ordering dodgy drugs off the internet worked perfectly, and I haven't thought of myself as ill for the last five years. I still take thyroid daily though, and I can't give it up without getting the CFS symptoms back. 

I've no idea what was ever wrong with me, or whether it's still wrong or got better on its own years ago, but I'm totally convinced that thyroid drugs fixed it or at least made it tolerable. My TSH is almost always suppressed, i.e. 0, and my free T4 and T3 levels are usually at the high end of the normal range. Any doctor worth his salt is going to tell me to drop my thyroid dose with those readings, and they do, but if I try I just feel awful for a bit, and all the old symptoms come back until I put it up again. I have absolutely no symptoms of hyperthyroidism/thyrotoxicity at my happy dose. 

But sadly, I know of at least a couple of CFS patients who've tried it in good faith (one was a close friend at the time I was working all this out five years ago, who came down with CFS a couple of years ago) and not had it work. All they report is a feeling of overstimulation, like with caffeine, and neither of them continued with it. My experience was more like a sudden miraculous unambiguous fix.

So your mileage may vary, but try it anyway. CFS is awful, thyroid's not too dangerous.

The best book I read was Gordon Skinner, 'Diagnosis and Management of Hypothyroidism'. John Lowe's book 'The Metabolic Treatment of Fibromyalgia' was also very good. Unsurprisingly they give conflicting advice and are both out of print. Everything else has at least a bit of bullshit in it. Mind how you go and good luck!

I should probably do a follow up post, five years on. 

 

Coronavirus-wise:

Recently, my coronavirus vaccine jabs (AstraZeneca), brought on bad fatigue and listlessness, the first one for a week, the second one for more like two months. Normally if I feel fatigued I put my thyroid dose up a bit and it goes away, so I tried that, but all it did was make me anxious and hot, as well as fatigued and listless, so I put it back down again. 

That was the most severe reaction of anyone I know to the vaccines. Lots of people get fatigue for a week, but two months is pretty much unheard of I think.

The fatigue seems to have finally cleared now, and I'm back to feeling as bouncy as before on the same dose of thyroid as I was originally on.

I asked on both reddit's r/hypothyroidism and on r/cfs, and I got a couple of replies on r/hypothyroidism saying that they'd had no such effect. And three on r/cfs saying that they'd all had something similar.

I have a feeling that the tiredness is something to do with the innate immune response trying to shut the body down to deny resources to viruses, and I wonder if that response gets stuck on, either by accident, or because you don't really clear the virus (like with the herpesviruses).

Best of luck on your journey, and I hope you find your miracle like I did. Most CFS just gets better on its own eventually I think, so hang on in there. But that doesn't mean that it's not worth trying the cheap, safe things that various loonies like me reckon might help, just in case they do!

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