All of Michelle's Comments + Replies

I am a PhD chemist (currently post-doc); my partner is a Physics professor. He has often said that the most selfless thing we could do would be to teach high school science. It is a super important job capable of changing lives, where talented people can really shine, but at the same time can be exhausting, soul-sucking, and tedious.

I think nursing is similar in a way.

My mom is a nurse, and my two younger sisters are nurses (the youngest still finishing school). When my youngest sister decided to start nursing school (she was undecided for a long time), I ... (read more)

An economics professor may beg to differ.

A few thoughts:

(1) I agree with Nanani, and think it would be awful to actively try to "recruit" females, or even really do anything to entice them to come/stay. Though I appreciate the spirit of the post nonetheless because I think it's a very interesting and important issue, and I think it's okay to acknowledge it and question it. If anything, efforts to even out the male/female imbalance would have to be made on a much greater scale to start to see change.

(2) Do people really think that it's an issue of females frequenting Less Wrong and then ... (read more)

Fascinating. I can somewhat emphasise with that having as I do the exact reverse experience. I haven't managed to create a habit of telling myself to think about trivial things while spacing out but I have done so with regards to (at least an acceptable fraction of) social encounters. It seems that thinking up trivial things is a distinctly non-trivial task! How ever do you manage it? This site is full of cute fluffy puppies. I agree and obvserve that projecting the apearance of thin skin is a somewhat more effective gambit for females than males.
I'm the most intellectually curious person I know (in non-Less Wrong circles, anyway), but of course I could be an exception.
I distinctly remember my first meeting with one of my female friends, she was staring at a poster on the wall which explained why e^(i pi)=-1, copying down each step, and clearly trying to understand it. This was not in connection to any class, she was just interested. And I remember being immediately, strongly attracted to her simply for that reason, because of that demonstrated, genuine curiosity. Which indicates that on some level, I perceived that trait as being remarkable, though I'm not sure that that's specifically because she was a girl. (For those looking for the end of the story, my best friend was already actively pursuing her (which is why we were being introduced), and I chose to respect the friendship.)

Crisis of belief? Definitely maybe. I don't know EY's full situation, but I'm still having a hard time digesting the idea that he just can't do it.

I believe you're just describing high-intensity interval training (HIIT) above. When I started learning about diet and fitness, that was a big one.

I agree with the poster who said to ask the bodybuilders. I got into reading bodybuilding information sites and they really do have it down to a fine art. There are many subtleties beyond "good diet and exercise." Screw up a few little things and you won't l... (read more)

Yeah, in my case it's omega 3s or 6s, deadlifts, HIIT, pull-ups, side presses, lots of minimally-processed or unprocessed foods, raw meats and eggs, and the occasional tomato/lemon puree for alkalinization. My achilles' heel has been not being spectacularly regular about any of this, in that I'll also eat out or eat junk when pressed for time or otherwise stressed. And sometimes my exercise will make me sore all over for days, causing me to skip some exercise. When I have ALL of this stuff lined up just so, I lose weight and have more energy. Drop even one piece, and it's flatline or gain.
Also Victoria, BC. (Same person as user "Eoghanalbar", which I'm not using anymore.)
Also Victoria, BC. Home of the sasquatch and pacific tree octopus, and where the conservative party is named 'the liberals'.

"More productive people are less creative."

Is this fact?

I have no idea, but I think could be a lot more to it than that.

I can agree from my experience in the sense that the more I find myself working on tasks, the less time I have for "thinking," particularly more "out-of-the-box thinking."

But I don't know if this is true in general, or at least how many people this would apply to.

I also think it depends how you define "productivity." If you give more productivity weight to creative ideas, even though they be less tangible and more sparse, then the statement's not necessarily true.

This is mostly agreeing to the same point, but I'm going to say it anyway because I think it's important.

I stumbled on Eliezer's writing fairly randomly (link to OB as an interesting blog). I was immediately sucked in. In fact, I was discussing the subject of modern-day genius with a friend, and after having read two or three of his posts, I sent my friend a link saying something like "this Eliezer guy seems like a pretty legit modern genius." [He replied with "psshhh... he's just working in a hyped-up field." (I don' t think he really ... (read more)

I think an important issue in this generalist/specialist debate and this attempt to create a list of the most important figures is that the historical time frame may be very relevant.

As the world becomes increasingly complex and fields of study, old and new, become increasingly specialized, would this not affect the ability of a generalist/specialist to produce a significant insight or make a significant contribution?

Perhaps it makes more sense to consider much more recent people as examples if we want to apply this to society as it stands now.