mr-hire's Comments

Matt Goldenberg's Short Form Feed
What you could do, in my opinion, is find a subgroup you feel comfortable with, and accept that this is the natural state of things.

I'm pretty pessimistic about this, it's never worked for me before, nor did I I find any existing subgroup in the rationality community that I could do this.

Or -- as you wrote -- you could create such subgroup around yourself.

Definitely, but why limit it to just rationalists in that case?

Matt Goldenberg's Short Form Feed

Note that as someone who has up and moved multiple times, I can assure you that it's possible to make friends in other cities. If you've never moved out of your home city, I recommend doing it at least once, for a few years, even if you move back at the end.

Matt Goldenberg's Short Form Feed

How to Read a Book is the quintessential how to book on gaining knowledge from a modernist perspective. What would a metamodern version of HTRAB look like?

HTRAB says that the main question you should be asking when reading a book is "Is this true?" The relationship you're concerned with is between the material and the real world.

But in a meta-modern perspective, you want to consider many other relationships.

One of those is the three way relationships between yourself, the material, and reality. Asking questions like "What new perspectives can I gain from this?" and "How does this relate to my other models of the world?"

Another is the relationship between the author and their source material. What does this writing say about the perspective of the author? Why did they choose to write this. This is bringing in a more post-modern/critical theory perspective.

HTRAB recommends "Synoptic Reading" - finding many books on the same subject or that circle around a specific topic to get a broad overview of the topic.

A meta-modern take would also look into other ways of grouping books. What about exploring facets of yourself through exploring authors that think differently and similarly to you? What about crafting a narrative as you dig into interesting parts of each book you move through?

What other takes would a Meta-Modern version of HTRAB encompass?

2018 Review: Voting Results!

I'd love to see a cluster analysis. I suspect there will be some obvious groups like "AI alignment vs. rationality", but also could give some interesting data on things like if "rationality vs. postrationality" is a real split or "Combat vs. Nurture" etc.

In that same vein, I'd also be really interested to see the vote results if pairwise-bounded quadratic voting was used. Intuitively to me this feels like an interesting attempt to look at "debiasing" the votes away from factions, and looking more at what the non-factional consensus is.

2018 Review: Voting Results!

Note that I considered this, but saw that the final decision of what would be included was subjective anyway, and it would be a stronger signal to the judges to spend a lot of my points on a few posts I thought really deserved it and would otherwise be underrated.

Epistea Summer Experiment (ESE)

I'm quite interested in ICF, and it sounds pretty similar to a lot of the rationality development we're doing with Athena. Would love to chat with you all about it.

Matt Goldenberg's Short Form Feed

Are you asking about my particular realization here, or this part:

And the thing is, I would go as far as to say many people in the rationality community experience this same frustration. They found a group that they feel like should be their tribe, but they really don't feel a close connection to most people in it, and feel alienated as a result.


MichaelA's Shortform

I like this and would find a post moderately valuable. I think sometimes posts with a lot of synonyms are hard to have take aways from, because it's hard to remember all the synonyms. What I think is useful is comparing and contrasting the different takes, creating a richer view of the whole framework by examining it from many angles.

Re Knightian Uncertainty vs. Risk, I wrote a post that discusses the interaction of different types of risks (including knightian) here:

Raemon's Scratchpad

Sometimes when I can't explain a concept except into relation to another concept, I use that as a sign that I need to approach one of the concepts from a completely separate/unique angle to get a handle on it.

Matt Goldenberg's Short Form Feed


One of my biggest learning experiences over the last few years was moving to the Bay Area, and attempting to be accepted into the "Rationality Tribe".

When I first took my CFAR workshop years ago, and interacted with the people in the group, I was enamored. A group of people who was into saving the world, self-improvement, understanding their own minds, connecting with others - I felt like I had found my people.

A few short months later I moved to the Bay Area.

I had never been good at joining groups or tribes. From a very early age, I made my friend group (sometimes very small) by finding solid individuals that could connect to my particular brand of manic, ambitious, and open, and bringing them together through my own events and hangouts.

In Portland, where I was before moving to the Bay, I really felt I had a handle on this, meeting people at events (knowing there weren't many who would connect with me in Portland), then regularly hosting my own events like dinner parties and meetups to bring together the best people.

Anyway, when I got to the Bay, I for the first time tried really hard to be accepted into existing tribes. Not only did I finally think I had found a large group of people I would fit in with, I was also operating under the assumption that I needed to be liked by all these peoples because they were allies in changing the world for the better.

And honestly, this made me miserable. While I did find a few solid people I really enjoyed, trying to be liked and accepted by the majority of people in the rationality community was an exercise in frustration - Being popular has always run counter to my ability to express myself honestly and openly, and I kept having to bounce between the two choices.

And the thing is, I would go as far as to say many people in the rationality community experience this same frustration. They found a group that they feel like should be their tribe, but they really don't feel a close connection to most people in it, and feel alienated as a result.

What feels real to me is that there are people in the rationality community that I like, and love. And there are people outside of the rationality community that I like and love. And that it makes a lot of sense for me to stop trying to bounce from round hole to round hole, trying to see if my square peg fits in.

Instead, like always, I'll just make my island, and invite the people who want to be there with me.

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