My Metaculus profile, though I'm currently unable to do as much forecasting:


A quick and crude comparison of epidemiological expert forecasts versus Metaculus forecasts for COVID-19

So I thought about it, and I think you're correct. At least, if their error was correlated and nonrandom (which is very natural in many situations), then we wouldn’t expect 14 of 18 in the group to get it in their range. So you're right. I can imagine hypotheticals where "group calibration in one-offs" might mean something, but not here now that I think about it.

Instead of that, I should've just stuck to pointing out how far out of the ranges many of them were. Rather than the proportion of the group that got it in their range. I.e. suppose an anonymous forecaster places a 0.0000001% probability on some natural macro-scale event having outcome A instead of B, on the next observation. Outcome A happens. That is strong evidence that they weren't just "incorrect with a lot of error"; they're probably really uncalibrated too.

Eyeballing the survey chart, many of those 80% CIs are so narrow, they imply the true figure to have been a many-sigma event. That's really incredible, and I would take it as evidence they're also uncalibrated (not just wrong in this one-off). That's a much better way to infer they're uncalibrated, than the 14 of 18 thing.

Semi-related: I'm unclear about a detail in your dice example. You say a rational and calibrated interval “should be [10,90]” for the dice rolling. Why? A calibrated-over-time 80% confidence interval on such dice could be placed anywhere (e.g. [1,80] or [21,100], so long as they are 80 units wide.

Is Clickbait Destroying Our General Intelligence?

I'm concerned about the way you're operationalizing this (as in, insufficiently). Could you make this into an concrete prediction about the world? What sort of question about this could we post on Metaculus that wouldn't resolve ambiguous?

Frequently Asked Questions for Central Banks Undershooting Their Inflation Target

I'm not an economist, but isn't it unambiguously better to send everyone small and adjustable amounts of money than buying a bunch of bonds or other financial assets? My reasoning is as follows:

  1. Inequality is increasing, which increases violence and destabilizes the social order. It might even have other negative effects, such as hampering economic growth. The current method of QE exacerbates inequality, as it mostly helps people who already own assets. A direct payment to everyone would instead reduce inequality. FYI, I don't think equality is a universal virtue or anything, but why increase inequality unnecessarily since it seems to make societal outcomes worse?
  2. I suspect you could accomplish more inflation per unit of money created by directly sending it to people to be spent. In the current method there is hardly any velocity, and the created units mostly just sit around pooling up in the financial sector. Again, nothing universally preferable to me about getting that inflation with fewer rather than more dollars, but I guess it might save a bit of...something, not sure, I'm just giving layperson babble right now. What's astonishing is how little inflation has happened after the astonomical amounts of dollars added to the "circulation"; why not give it to people who are likely to actually do stuff with it, instead of having it mostly just sit in investment portfolios?
  3. The whole "jobs" and work ethic thing has been historically very important for the functioning of society, and you would just starve if you didn't work dawn to dusk in 1850. But who thinks 40 hours a week is even still a preferable use of the people's time? Flipping burgers or writing TPS reports 40 hours a week is pretty frigging restrictive in what you can invent or create, and it gets less necessary every decade from here out. I keep hearing the claim that we can't afford a basic income, and here we are funding various questionable programs and wars, giving questionable subsidies to various firms, and printing colossal amounts of money. We watch it pool up without causing much inflation, and wonder whatever could be done to stimulate. I don't see the dilemma. Give it to people.
Dark Side Epistemology

What kind of thing do you mean by "occasionally a little misguided"? Are you referring to something bad about it because humans (and all our mental frailties) were using it, or something bad that would happen no matter what kind of creature tried to use it, even ones that had ways around human-like mental frailties?

(I see this comment is from 7 years ago, and I will understand completely if no response comes.)

What Bayesianism taught me

How about religion? There is a variety of them and they can't all be right (many claim to be the only true one), yet people tend to just believe whichever one they happen to have been raised to believe. They are believing in these massive cosmic arrangements and belief accident of where they happen to have been raised. And I always have to tell them this.

I expected a very high "obviousness" to my assertion that the median citizen needs to be told these things; that's why I didn't even bother giving evidence. Why is this necessary?

What Bayesianism taught me

Bayesianism boils down to “don’t be so sure of your beliefs; be less sure when you see contradictory evidence.” Now that is just common sense.

...Common? Maybe in successful circles of academia.

Why does anyone need to be told this?

What a bizarre question. I find it difficult to believe that this person has any experience with the average/median citizen.

Eliezer Yudkowsky Facts

I don't always think clearly, but when I do, I prefer Yudkowsky.

Stay friendly, AIs.

A digitized belief network?

I'm not sure where to ask this, I'll just toss it here.

You know this site? I'm interested in something that would work similarly but for a different purpose.

Instead of visitors putting in a few favorite bands, you make an account and select degrees of agreement with various pre-made contentious issues. The account is so you can update your views and change the data points you contributed. So for example, there would be one for "Humans evolved by natural selection", and there would be a selection of confidence levels you could pick to represent your agreement or disagreement.

You then get a bunch of people to do this, and use algorithms similar to that music site's, so that you end up with a kind of crowd belief map with the different statements of belief clustering based on statistical closeness. So the selection for "Humans evolved by natural selection: Strongly Agree" would be on the map somewhere, probably nearer a democrat-ish cluster, and probably farther from an "intelligent design"-ish cluster of agreement statements.

So you'd end up with things like a conspiracy theory-ish cluster, which would probably have "UFOs have been on Earth: Agree" somewhere near or inside it. I would find it fascinating to look at this sort of visual representation for where these statements of belief would appear on a belief landscape, especially after thousands of people have participated and with lots of different issues to weigh in on.

If the sample size was big enough, you might even use it as a rough first-draft confidence of a particular statement you haven't researched yet. Sometimes I just wish I could short-sell a conspiracy-theory belief cluster index fund, or an ID one. And I might get a heads-up on things to look into, say for example the belief statements that ended up nearer to "Many worlds interpretation: Agree".

Have no heroes, and no villains

Ah! Well I had no cluifiability until you posted, thanks.

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