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Unexplored modes of language

I haven't seen that documentary, but I'd guess it's about the gripping language.  (If not, then there are multiple such languages in the world, even better!)

Writing to think

I'd like to be able to look through my list of posts and feel content that each and every one is something that I put into the world because I am really proud of it and it deserves to be there, but that mindset just leads me to the catch-22.

Another reason to be less strict about quality before publishing: you're not a perfect judge of the quality of your own work.  Sometimes your writing is better than you think it is, and filtering too hard means that some good writing won't be published.  If you don't lose any of your bets, you're not taking enough risks.

Knowledge, manipulation, and free will

So "no manipulation" or "maintaining human free will" seems to require a form of indifference: we want the AI to know how its actions affect our decisions, but not take that influence into account when choosing those actions.

I think the butler can take that influence into account in making its choices, but still reduce its manipulativity by explaining to Petrov what it knows about how breakfast will affect Petrov's later choices.  When they're on equal epistemic footing, Petrov can also take that information into account, and perhaps choose to deliberately resist the influence of breakfast, if he doesn't endorse it.  Of course, there are limits to how much explanation is possible across a substantial intelligence gap between AI and people, so this doesn't dissolve manipulation entirely.

Shouldn't there be a Chinese translation of Human Compatible?

"shaped by their values" != "aligned with their values".  I think Stuart is saying not that China will solve the alignment problem, but that they won't be interested in solving it because they're focused on expanding capabilities, and translating a book won't change that.

Highlights from the Blackmail Debate (Robin Hanson vs Zvi Mowshowitz)

But the typical use of NDAs is notably different from the typical use of blackmail, isn't it? Even though in principle they could be used in all the same situations, they're aren't used that way in practice. Doesn't that make it reasonable to treat them differently?

Uncalibrated quantum experiments act clasically
If α is smaller it's less than half-silvered, and if α is bigger it's more than half-silvered.

Just a nit, but isn't this backwards? Less silvering means less reflection and more transmission, but this first diagram labels the transmitted amplitude as α, not the reflected amplitude.

Causal Diagrams and Causal Models

If we know that there's a burglar, then we think that either an alarm or a recession caused it; and if we're told that there's an alarm, we'd conclude it was less likely that there was a recession, since the recession had been explained away.

Should that be "since the burglar had been explained away"? Or am I confused?

Edit: I was confused. The burglar was explained; the recession was explained away.

The Useful Idea of Truth

If people weren't around, then "snow is white" would still be a true sentence, but it wouldn't be physically embodied anywhere (in quoted form). If we want to depict the quoted sentence, the easiest way to do that is to depict its physical embodiment.

The Useful Idea of Truth

Beliefs should pay rent, check. Arguments about truth are not just a matter of asserting privilege, check. And yet... when we do have floating beliefs, then our arguments about truth are largely a matter of asserting privilege. I missed that connection at first.