I am a relative newcomer to Less Wrong. I discovered Elizer Yudkowski and Scott Anderson in 2019. My posts revolve around trying to solve quantum gravity and build an AGI. For my day job, I run a consumer AI company.


Quantum Gravity
Fractal Minds


The new Editor

Is it possible to insert tables via the Markdown editor?

Open & Welcome Thread - September 2020
  • Quantitative finance has use for people who know advanced math and algorithms. (Though they are not known for doing great good for society.)
  • You can also get around this problem by starting your own ML startup. (I did this.) The startup route takes work and risk tolerance but provides high positive externalities for society.
Open & Welcome Thread - September 2020

I do not think the core disagreement between you and me comes from a failure of me to explain my thoughts clearly enough. I do not believe that elaborating upon my reasoning would get you to change your mind about the core disagreement. Elaborating upon my position would therefore waste both of our time.

The same goes for your position. The many words you have already written have failed to move me. I do not expect even more words to change this pattern.

Curi is being banned for wasting time with long, unproductive conversations. It would be ironic for me to embroil myself in such a conversation as a consequence.

Open & Welcome Thread - September 2020

I googled the definition, and these are the two (for define:threat)

  • a statement of an intention to inflict pain, injury, damage, or other hostile action on someone in retribution for something done or not done.
  • a person or thing likely to cause damage or danger.

Neither of these apply.

I prefer this definition, "a declaration of an intention or determination to inflict punishment, injury, etc., in retaliation for, or conditionally upon, some action or course; menace". I think the word "retribution" implies undue justice. A "threat" need only imply retaliation, not retribution, of hostile action.

We have substantial disagreements about what constitutes a threat,

Evidently yes, as do dictionaries.

Open & Welcome Thread - September 2020

Non-dualist philosophies such as Zen place high value on confusion (they call it "don't know mind") and have a sophisticated framework for communicating this idea. Zen is one of the alternative intellectual traditions I alluded to in my controversial post about ethical progress.

The Dao De Jing 道德经, written 2.5 thousand years ago, includes strong warnings against ontological certainty (and, by extension, moral certainty). If we naïvely apply the Lindy Effect then Chinese civilization is likely to continue for thousands more years while Western science annihilates itself after mere centuries. This may not be a coincidence.

Here is the manifesto you are looking for:


―Chapter 1 of the Dao De Jing 道德经

Unfortunately, the duality of emptiness and form is difficult to translate into English.

Open & Welcome Thread - September 2020

So why hasn't civilization figured that out already?

States evolve to perpetuate themselves. Civilization has figured it out (in the blind idiot god sense of "figured it out") that moral uncertainty is teachable and decreases trust in the state ideology. You have it backward. The states in existence today promote moral certainty in children for exactly the same reason the Communist and Nazi states did.

Open & Welcome Thread - September 2020

Compulsory education is an organ of the state. Nation-states evolve to perpetuate their own existence. Teaching moral uncertainty is counter-productive toward maintaining the norms of a nation-state.

Open & Welcome Thread - September 2020

If I understand you correctly then your primary argument appears to be that a ban is (1) too harsh a judgment where a warning would have sufficed, (2) that curi ought to have some sort of appeals process and (3) that habryka's top-level comment does not provide detailed citations for all the accusations against curi.

(1) Curi was warned at least once.

(2) Curi is being banned for wasting time with long, unproductive conversations. An appeals process would produce another long, unproductive conversation.

(3) Specific quotes are unnecessary. It blindingly obvious from a glance through curi's profile and even curi's response you linked to that curi is damaging to productive dialogue on Less Wrong.

The strongest claim against curi is "a history of threats against people who engage with him [curi]". I was able to confirm this via a quick glance through curi's past behavior on this site. In this comment curi threatens to escalate a dialogue by mirroring it off of this website. By the standards of collaborative online dialogue, this constitutes a threat against someone who engaged with him.

Edit: grammar.

Free Educational and Research Resources

Audible is releasing free audiobooks for children while schools are closed due to COVID-19. They can be listened to in-browser without downloading an app or logging in.

Free Educational and Research Resources

If we are listing quality educational history podcasts then it would be a shame not to mention History of Japan.

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