All of LordTC's Comments + Replies

Q&A with Harpending and Cochran

It could also be communications.

Many high intelligence situations involve disorders that also have as an effect anti-social behavior. Academia is highly geared against this in some cases going so far as to evaluate people's chances for success in a PhD based on their ability to form working relationships with a peer group during their MSc. Travel is easier and correspondence is far more personal.

Would the mathematicians of the past have been as interested in this model? Perhaps some of them were the type of people that were happy to correspond by mail ... (read more)

Q&A with Harpending and Cochran

I think education not becoming harder in the earlier grades is a strong misnomer. My parents did punctuation symbols in their grade 5 curriculum, I did it in grade 3, It's currently done in Kindergarten or Grade 1, and many other topics have similar track records.

As for high school math programs, many parts of the world have had a shift from a 13 grade program to a 12 grade program which compresses a lot of material.

I think a bigger factor may be we are better at recognizing and marketing talent. The kids who find high school mathematics a complete joke... (read more)

Blue- and Yellow-Tinted Choices

If you tilt your head sideways and look at the top faces simultaneously from below the plane of the top face you'll see that they are the same color (a very dark grey).

What is bunk?

http://michaelnielsen.org/blog/three-myths-about-scientific-peer-review/

is a post that I find relevant.

Peer-Review is about low hanging branches, the stuff supported by enough evidence already that writing about it can be done easily by sourcing extensive support from prior work.

As for the damage of ignoring correct contrarians, there was a nobel prize in economics awarded for a paper on markets with asymmetric information which a reviewer rejected with a comment like "If this is correct then all of economics is wrong".

There is also the story of ... (read more)

2Blueberry12yYou might be thinking of de Broglie [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Louis_de_Broglie]. Einstein was called in to review his PhD thesis. Though he did end up getting his PhD (and the Nobel).
Human values differ as much as values can differ

"You may argue that the extremely wealthy and famous don't represent the desires of ordinary humans. I say the opposite: Non-wealthy, non-famous people, being more constrained by need and by social convention, and having no hope of ever attaining their desires, don't represent, or even allow themselves to acknowledge, the actual desires of humans."

I have a huge problem with this statement. This is taking one subset of the population where you can measure what they value by their actions, and saying without evidence that they represent the gener... (read more)

But Somebody Would Have Noticed

Agree, my previous post was very sloppy.

Often was a stretch and much of the factual information is a little off.

I guess my experience taking lower level complexity courses with people who don't do theory means what I often hear are statements by people who consider themselves computer scientist that you think no computer scientist would make.

I upvoted your post because I'm glad for the correction and read up about the problem after you made it.

But Somebody Would Have Noticed

Except this is an attitude that discourages people from working on a lot of problems and occasionally its proven wrong.

You could often here computer scientists being sloppy about the whole Prime Factorization is NP-hard argument with statements like "If NP is not equal to P one can't determine if a number is prime or not in polynomial time." And stuff like this is probably one of the more famous examples of things people are discouraged from working on based on "Somebody would have noticed by now".

Guess what, this was shown to be doable, and it shocked people when it came out.

A few problems with that. First of all, anyone actually paying attention enough to think about the problem of determining primality in polynomial time thought that it was doable. Before Agrawal's work, there were multiple algorithms believed but not proven to run in polynomial time. Both the elliptic curve method and the deterministic Miller-Rabin test were thought to run in polynomial time (and the second can be shown to run in polynomial time assuming some widely believed properties about the zeros of certain L-functions). What was shocking was how sim... (read more)

The Absent-Minded Driver

They really ought to be, what's the rational value in putting the time and effort into chess to become a world champion at it.

I played it semi-seriously when I was young, but gave it up when in order to get to the next level I'd have to study more than play. Most of the people I know who were good at a competitive intellectual game dropped out of school to pursue it, because they couldn't handle studying at that level for both.

I find it rather difficult to believe that pursuing chess over school is the rationally optimal choice, so I wouldn't be remotely surprised to find that those who get to that level are irrational or superstitious when it comes to non-chess problems.

The Absent-Minded Driver

The UBC is able to do a non-profit elections prediction market, and it generally does better than the average of the top 5 pollsters.

The popular vote market is you pay $1 for 1 share of CON, LIB, NDP, Green, Other, and you can trade shares like a stockmarket.

The ending payout is $1 * % of popular vote that group gets.

There are other markets such as a seat market, and a majority market.

The majority market pays 50/50 if no majority is reached, and 100/0 otherwise, which makes it pretty awkward in some respects. Generally predicting a minority government t... (read more)

Averaging value systems is worse than choosing one

I disagree with this.

I think a natural intuition about a moral values domain suggests that things are likely to be non-linear and discontinuous.

I don't think its so much saying the claim is wrong in simple cases, but its still correct in cases no one understands.

It's more saying the alternative claims being proposed are a long ways from handling any real world example, and I'm disinclined to believe that a sufficiently complicated system will satisfy continuity and linearity.

The Red Bias

The US is the unusual color scheme here though. Red is generally associated with the left, look at the flags of most communist countries, and party colors etc.

And I think it flipped only once not every four years, because when I look at the Reagan maps, he's blue in both of them!

The Red Bias

Are those really the same colors, the red seems more orange in this one than the one up top, and the blue seems darker than the original.

0sketerpot12yIf the "red" and "blue" of the original had some color components in other channels, then those would indeed by subtly different colors in my altered picture. I just swapped the red and blue channels of the image.
Eight Short Studies On Excuses

Oxford types have a solution for this problem, it's a pronoun called "one".

I find it slightly amusing in a situation where you are highly critical of polite euphemisms, that are generally well understood (chance of error is far below 1%), you make your point with imprecise language by using an ambiguous pronoun "you" rather than the unambiguous "one". In my experience people make this error with ambiguous pronouns at a far higher frequency than not-graded vs grade of zero.