lsusr

You can find links to all of my Less Wrong writings plus some extras on my blog.

Sequences

The Singularity War
Luna Lovegood and the Chamber of Secrets
Sunzi's《Methods of War》
2020 Less Wrong Darwin Game
Quantitative Finance
Quantum Gravity
Antimemetics

Comments

What ethical thought experiments can be reversed?

This type of argument is called "proof of contradiction". You start by supposing is true. Then you do a bunch of a logic which assumes is true. If, at the end, you prove something wrong then is false. Proofs by contradiction are frequently used in mathematics where (compared to morality) it's easy to ensure your logic remains ironclad.

lsusr's Shortform

Good idea. I have added numbers.

Open & Welcome Thread – March 2021

I can proofread it. You can send the draft to me via private message.

The Flexibility of Abstract Concepts

You're probably trying to get along with other people, so you look for ways their statements are true rather than false.

This is the core idea. Most statements are imprecise. You have flexibility in how to interpret them. People tend to like you better when you interpret their words in a way that makes them true.

lsusr's Shortform

There are the rules I use when I'm writing.

  1. Write in the positive. Never draw attention to someone else for being wrong. If someone else is wrong then ignore them and state what is true. If someone else is unclear then ignore them entirely. Do not insult others. Do not write with contempt. Look for why things are true.
  2. Write the minimum necessary to prove a point. Do not preempt counterarguments.
  3. Contaminate your ideas with concepts from distant domains.
  4. Do not write about topics because they are prestigious. Prestige measures what other people care about. Write what you care about.
  5. Do not repeat anything someone else has already said. Only quote others if you are quoting from memory.
  6. Do not repeat yourself.
  7. Do not worry that readers might misinterpret what you write. Readers will misinterpret what you write.
  8. Do not worry that what you write will not be worth reading. You cannot predict what will be worth reading.
  9. Do not write convoluted ideas. If an idea seems convoluted then either it is a stupid idea or your logic is garbage. Complex ≠ convoluted. Complicated ideas are fine. Esoteric ideas are fine.
  10. Do not pander.
  11. Never write "As an <identity>…". A statement's truth value does not depend on who you are.
  12. Do include personal experiences.
  13. Avoid creating media with a short shelf life.
  14. Ignore cynics. Cynics neither do things nor invent things.
  15. Writing tests your courage. If you have anything important to say then most people will think you are wrong.
  16. Write things that are true. Do not write things that are untrue.
Revitalizing Less Wrong seems like a lost purpose, but here are some other ideas

I'm writing this from Less Wrong 2.0.

If you've got a great idea for a blog post, and you don't already have an online presence, it's a bit hard to reach lots of people, if that's what you want to do.

I don't know what Less Wrong 1.0 was like but I feel like Less Wrong 2.0 accomplishes this.

If we had a good system for incentivizing people to write great stuff (as opposed to merely tolerating great stuff the way LW culture historically has), we'd get more great stuff written.

Once again, I don't know what Less Wrong 1.0 was like, but I think Less Wrong 2.0 does a good job of this without incentivizing too much.

Weighted Voting Delenda Est

Personally, I am allergic to application processes. Especially opaque ones. I likely would have never joined this website if there was an application process for new users. I don't think the site is too crowded with bad content right now, though that's certainly a potential problem if more people choose to write posts. If lots more people flood this site with low quality posts then an alternative solution could be to just tighten the frontpage criteria.

For context: I was not part of Less Wrong 1.0. I have only known Less Wrong 2.0.

Weighted Voting Delenda Est

Czynski claims to find "almost nothing of value which is less than five years old". It may be more efficient for Czynski to write high-quality posts instead.

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