Wouldn't it be nice if there were a way to at least document random cures? Someone I know used to have problems doctors could not diagnose (lingua geographica was a symptom... one of those things nobody knows much about). Biopsies were made, blood levels were checked, a heroic efforts was put into trying to match the symptoms with something known. They disappeared all at once after a coloscopy, which requires, lo and behold, an intestinal cleansing that seriously disrupts the gut ecosystem. The moment the symptoms disappeared, doctors forgot about the issu... (read more)
Or you can choose to subvert the system from the inside, which would justify your being part of it in the first place, which would justify filling out those CVs and striving to get as much influence as possible in order to be more effective at you future plans to make the system less broken. Imagine yourself in a position to hire others and choosing not to fall into the trap. That would be subverting the system for the better, and you won't get there without getting hired first. Some people would find that motivating enough.
Fair points made, will take them and ponder.
To me, the idea of eliminating an entire species of insect that is part of a complex system sounds reckless. The consequences cannot be predicted and we continue the trend of destroying rather than adapting. Not to mention that DNA is complex in its own right and we cannot predict the consequences of introducing mutations at a faster rate than "nature" has stabilized coping with.
The objective is not to eliminate malaria, really; it's to eliminate the disease that is caused by malaria, for which there are many approaches that do not require messing with lar... (read more)
But enormous resources are already used destroying local mosquito populations. In many countries water in swamps is covered with a layer of oil to stop mosquitos breeding in it. Helicopters and planes I think sometimes spray insecticides over forests. In Singapore and parts of Malaysia these kinds of measures have successfully eliminated the local mosquitos.
A gene drive might be cheaper and more effective (and with less side effects) than blanketing the water with oil and the air with insecticides.
Malaria deaths are a crazy high number. How bad would the ecological side-effects need to be to make it not worthwhile?
Humans have driven to extinction tens of thousands of species, and continue to kill more every year. Whilst mostly bad, very few of them have had terrible impacts on the ecosystem.
To then hyperfocus on one particular species, specifically one which kills hundreds of thousands of people each year, is essentially an isolated demand for rigour. If we wanted to reduce our impact on the ecosystem let's focus instead on saving some of the species that don't cause extreme human suffering.
I have a suspicion the guidelines are violated because "22" is a bullet caliber... a different number would probably work.
Hahaha! Of course. Thank you so much for running suggestions. This is what having young children with incredible artistic skills is like.
Is it ok if I hang the image of "a blog post on less wrong" on my wall? It speaks to my artistic sensibility.
It makes me wonder what 22 bucks in a glass of COVID look like. It also matches pretty well with my experience with dreams, where written words and letters are always fake even though I "know" what they stand for.
More importantly, what does it produce when you ask it to draw the future (maybe in the style of the 70s)?
Okay, seriously, this is a great way to explore how "common sense" differs between humans and this AI and highlight the risks, visually and viscerally, of relying on a technology that is fundamentally alien to humanity. Images are innocuous, but what happens when you apply AI to other objectives?
[22 bucks in a glass of covid] gets back an error message that the request violated guidelines.
[the future in the style of the 70's] is probably too vague to end up being awesome, but trying it... guess I can't put it in a comment. I'll add a request section to the post.
That is a very interesting proposal indeed, a search engine that doesn't return links to existing pages but instead generates them on the fly based on the query and the knowledge it has, like an aunt who just must have an answer to everything, even if it's made up, would be a lot more entertaining and possibly even more useful than existing ones. It would no longer be a search engine, but an answering machine, which certainly fits Google's goal of making knowledge find-able.
Ok, that's not what you meant, but I think it has potential.
It is being done, search for inactivated vaccines in https://www.raps.org/news-and-articles/news-articles/2020/3/covid-19-vaccine-tracker . I seem to recall there's a tiny, tiny, tiny chance of some viruses not being inactive, so I don't see an advantage. Also, all the adverse reactions of an mRNA vaccine seem to be related to the configuration of the spike protein they produce because it is very similar to the virus' spike protein, and an inactivated virus vaccine has the actual spike protein, so no gain there either. It is an alternative, though.
Also, th... (read more)
I finally got around to fixing the diagrams. It wasn't an iPad-specific problem, just the way diagrams are "pasted" into the editor when copied directly from PlantUML... apparently, it's not the image that gets pasted, but the URL to a diagram rendered server-side which has a limited lifetime.
Just a note that this has a very anthropocentric perspective about utility. Humans do not live in isolation, however, and our numbers and behaviours affect the rest of the "system" (essentially, all other macroscopic life forms and plenty of microscopic ones). Taking a step back, human happiness may not be a good indicator, at all, of total utility to the system. There is probably a number of humans that just about maximises total utility and going beyond it only hurts the whole.
I'm not sure everyone thinks death is bad. I mean, it's been a "feature" of being human since before there were humans and it has worked quite well so far to have a process of death. Messing with a working system is always a dangerous proposition, so I, personally, wonder if it is wise to remove that feature. Therefore, I do nothing about it (maybe I should be more active in opposition? I don't know).
Dangerous proposition in what sense? Someone may die? Everyone may die? I have, um, not very good news for you...
The whole point of using a model is to explain and predict without the sometimes prohibitive costs of not modelling, but it comes at the price of losing "resolution of reality". That loss is what leads to uncertainty. Understanding enough about the immune system to know how current vaccines operate in the body and how risks add up differently in different bodies (ecosystems, really) could take several generations of dedicated research... we've collectively been at it since before Pasteur, keep making amazing discoveries, and still can't provide really good answers. So I feel you will only get half-baked guesses in this forum and slightly better ones if you ask COVID experts.
Thanks! I've updated the calculation and diagram.
It is great for holding discussions when there are more people involved in a decision.
As for the calculation, can you help me spot the mistake? I can't find it!
I read studies (seriously, it's super time-consuming!) and consider the best evidence available. Because of the lag introduced by studies, sometimes hearsay is enough to put in a guesstimate. It's interesting to play around with the values, however, and see what magnitude change in a single one would lead to a change in the ultimate decision. Sometimes you find out it doesn't make a difference, and more precise information would be irrelevant, so you can move on.
It's hard, and I find that I need to update my models every now and then. Practice makes better.
You can reduce the risk of cavities. X-ray technology was invented in Germany, where I live, and they have had a history of regulating its use. I have my teeth checked twice a year and have never been asked to get an x-ray. This is in contrast to my experiences growing up in the American continent, where, despite all the x-rays, I developed a lot of cavities. Using an electric toothbrush, buying toothpaste with a small amount of fluoride and flossing twice a day have been effective for me in drastically reducing the risk of cavities and obviating the need ... (read more)
He provides circumstantial evidence that this pandemic was the result of the research. His purpose, however, doesn't seem to be the assignment of blame on political grounds but making sure that a very possible origin of the virus is not dismissed as a conspiracy theory, rendering prevention measures suboptimal in the future.
A physics professor at the university of Hamburg, in Germany, spent over a year putting together research papers and publications from labs dedicated to that kind of research, like the one in Wuhan, and published significant bits of them along with commentary to instigate public discussion about Covid and the need -- or lack thereof -- of research related to making viruses more dangerous. He asks a great point: even in the best case, the research done so far on Coronaviruses from bats, manipulated to be more dangerous in a lab, has not helped us prevent a ... (read more)
Usonian = from the USA, which doesn't offend the sensibilities of the rest of the countries in the continent of America
This video on how Usonian CIA operatives disguise themselves claims a simple piece of gravel in your shoe will change how you walk completely: https://youtu.be/JASUsVY5YJ8
I agree with the majority of what you speculate about concerning the effects of an ad-oriented internet, although I keep seeing very good science and engineering content produced exclusively for the web and paid for through a mix of advertising and some form of sales (merchandise, the right to access early content, etc.).
The Mozilla Foundation publishes excellent articles on privacy on the web in their newsletter and then actually takes action, as does the Electronic Frontier Foundation; those would be good groups to contribute to if you want to support ac... (read more)
This site attempts to provide a forecast for 130 countries, India included, and provides information on both sources and methodology. The data appears to be refreshed regularly, so it isn't stale. https://covid19.healthdata.org/india?view=total-deaths&tab=trend
Maybe it will be of help to you.
Indeed, since each body is a different ecosystem and each body exists inside larger, distinct ecosystems, you'll have to decide what your objective about health is and be satisfied with "good enough" and letting your body do its thing.
To illustrate the complications, people who descend from groups adapted to particular regions and who have now migrated or been forcibly relocated to others may have different dietary needs than the adapted, local groups. For example: someone living away from the equator traditionally consumed a lot more fish and milk derivat... (read more)
There is a Dr. Greger whose speech I can't stand but from whose books and online videos I have learned a lot (search for nutritionfacts and How Not To Die. Also, there are many, free online courses on health topics like the microbiome, epigenetics, diseases, nutrition, etc. that you can take through the years as they keep getting updated with the latest learnings (currently in vogue is the role of the microbiota in the gut, for example, so every few months new information is made available). What I've learned is that the human body is incredibly resilient ... (read more)
I would much rather rinse a mobile phone regularly if it is water-proof (an increasing number is!) than use copper tape, although I would not use soap on the screen, to preserve its oleophobic properties; alternatively, if I were in a very susceptible group or if the virus were much more dangerous to me, I would find it more effective to put the phone in a plastic bag and either exchange it often or wash it as often as my own hands.
The thought process here is that copper tape cannot be applied to screens, which can end up very close to faces, but washing with soap is effective.
Just curious, how much would you be willing to pay for a mail-based, yearly subscription to a service that takes care of the more onerous things you mentioned: planning, logistics, rotation; one that ensures you always have a one-week supply of essentials available (something to eat, medical, charger, etc) and manages their disposal (reuse and recycle) and refreshing on a regular basis?
I'm sure it's not necessary to have entire populations be prepared as long as enough individuals can help the rest (like the example of a neighbor with a pool), so I'm wondering how low the barrier for preparation needs to be to reach that amount of people, in monetary terms.