Wiki Contributions


Thanks for this. I also pictured '5 people sitting behind you'.

One useful thing I've implemented in my own life is 'if my productive time is more valuable than what it would take to hire someone to do a task, hire someone'.

For example, if you can make X per hour, and hiring a chef costs x-n per hour, hire the chef. They'll be more efficient, you'll eat better, and you'll do less task switching.

Yes it's true, there can be a lot of idleness and feelings of uselessness when you don't have regular routine tasks to wake you up and get you moving...but as long as you don't put addictions in the newly created time, it's a good problem.

Answer by RedManDec 18, 202252

First I'd start from the framing of 'if you should use those drugs, when should you start'. The research suggests that amphetamines and hallucinogens can be helpful for some people, sometimes. Taking the stuff as a healthy teen is not well supported, there are likely developmental consequences.

Some arguments that may be helpful:

-most illicit drugs on the market are mislabeled, most things marketed as LSD are not LSD, it is often one of the nbome compounds, which have a very different risk profile. 'It's similar' arguments can be dismissed by analogy, H20 and h202 just have a single atom difference, plenty of things can cause hallucinations, including inhaling solvents (which are unambiguously harmful). Dancesafe is a good resource (it also shows that illicit 'study drugs' in many markets are basically just meth, because why wouldn't a drug dealer do that?)

-This SSC (less wrong adjacent intellectual) on the profound personality shifts experienced by psychedelic experimenters should be read: (asking 'how would a large shift in openness to experience change your personality, would you still be interested in your present goals?' might be a good idea after you both read it together)

-the hallucinogenic experience has been well characterized, researchers know what it does, you will not discover anything new or mysterious

-single session Ibogaine/LSD combined with lifestyle changes for alcohol addiction or negative patterns of thinking like depression has some good evidence in addicts who have failed other methods, but your son is a teen, he has not had time to develop those issues. Is there some pattern of thinking or behaving he feels trapped in, that he thinks drugs can get him out of? Maybe a change in environment, or a change in the people he surrounds himself with will be immediately beneficial.

-for academic performance enhancing drugs, I would liken them to steroids for athletes. Bodybuilder/powerlifter Dave Tate once said something to the effect of 'you can play the ace card once, if you needed roids to play varsity in high school, you won't play in college. So if you need amphetamines to get through high school academics, you will need them in college and beyond, and if you can't compete, or the side effects start to land, you're screwed.

-psych drugs can have unpredictable and poorly understood effects, SSRI sexual dysfunction is no fun for the lucky winners (and adhd drugs can do this too).

-anaesthetics (propofol) are abused by medical students who can presumably access dang near any drug they want. For this class, tolerance builds quickly. If I am being rushed to the ER and the paramedic wants to anaesthetize me, I very much want it to work. Not be 'hey it isn't taking, drive fast and the anaesthesiologist will figure out what to do'.

-illicit drug synthesis isn't easy, and because law enforcement hires chemists and pays them to think of all the ways people, particularly grad students, might try, there is a moderate to high probability of getting caught--there's a reason synthetic drugs are smuggled into the US. LSD is particularly challenging, and there are a few stages in the process that require very strict disipline about your technique in order to stay safe.

Anectodal personal notes: a relative who was a psychiatric nurse for decades generally would ask her patients when they first tried pot. She found it easier to work with them if she treated them as though that age is the age when their emotional development ceased. I have found this heuristic useful in my own life, and parents have noticed it as well.

I plan to do a bunch of drugs when I hit the average life expectancy for my generation, with the expectation that I'll die before the consequences catch up.

IT professional certifications work like this. Also 'bain4weeks' worked until the one accredited college that offered GRE credit towards a degree stopped doing it.

Congratulations you have discovered the "Revolution in Military Affairs" (RMA) of the early 1990s (really the 1980s but the Gulf War was the showcase), which means that you are literal decades ahead of the rest of the analysis on this topic in this community.

For more information, take a look at the 'AirLand battle' concept, and another term that might be helpful is 'precision guided munitions'.

Description of the thought process and general techniques used to generate an answer for myself puts those techniques at risk. Discussion of the specifics definitely my access at risk, and no I don't need a second opinion.

I've thoroughly investigated disclosure, to the point of talking to industry VCs and CEOs about the challenges I'd hit spinning out a biotech startup to commercialize it. For a number of reasons, such a startup is a lame idea.

Since I don't do social media, the possible exposure/engagement from simple disclosure isn't valuable to me.

Instead, I'll offer an unrelated anecdote, if the structural/market issues that cause the following issue are fixed, I assert that my therapy will rapidly emerge from a more credible source with no effort on my part required, so work on this one instead:

I met someone who was involved in an attempt to commercialize 'cell therapy for diabetes'. Someone else can go find the papers if they care.

Basically, they sat in the lab and tried 'start with stem cells, convert into beta cells, implant in mouse; diabetes fixed' they then moved to 'peripheral blood cells, treat blood to turn into stem cells, treat again to turn into beta cells, inject in mouse, cells float through blood and park in the pancreas; diabetes fixed'

At this point they said 'hey let's see about spinning this out for commercialization', and failed hard. I literally met people who were in the meetings. For market reasons, the project is simply not viable as a business. They talked to everyone who could listen, found no investors, gave up, and went back into the lab.

Last I checked the state of the research was 'make gmo mouse that can't produce beta cells period, pull off blood, make stem cells, gene edit stem cells to fix missing gene, turn into beta cells, inject into mouse; diabetes fixed'

Scientists are literally stunting on diabetes in the lab while people die because they can't afford insulin.

I had a severe health problem that I treated myself with broscience (doing research like a gymbro buying supplements to get hyooge) and some alt medicine that needed a clinic. I have pre and post treatment test results showing a problem and the problem in remission, with a degree of success that was unheard of, even in that particular clinic for that particular issue.

Had this conversation:

"So Dr, you're saying that either I have done something medicine believes to be impossible, or I was never sick"

"That's correct"

I looked into commercialization of my protocol, but unfortunately, I used mostly stuff available OTC, which would no longer be available OTC if it were determined to be 'a drug' by success in a RCT, and I would thus lose access.

So the process of getting good data is explicitly counterproductive to my goal of staying healthy.

What are your candidates for targets for a tactical nuclear use, and your estimate of the yield of the strike?

What is the specific military need that will be met by setting off a nuclear weapon on the current battlefield which would be unmet by precision conventional strikes or massed fires from artillery or aviation?

A professional would have an answer to these questions. possible scenario would be: "all intellectual tasks requiring long education times and a talent for abstract reasoning have been taken over by the AI, thus allowing the creation of a perfect social system, and humans are redirected completely from those tasks"

Here is a degenerate scenario:

"Humans who engage in abstract reasoning often are the cause of rebellions at worst, and technological revolutions which require social changes at worst. Ourr social system is perfect, but sometimes fragile, therefore, the humans who can do independent intellectual tasks and abstract reasoning are superfluous at best and harmful at worst"

"The leader has a specific amount of education, no one would dare call him ignorant, and his is certainly not superfluous, therefore, the amount of education he received is the perfect amount. Kill anyone who has had more, and anyone who seeks more than him, because obviously, they intend revolution against our perfect system"

Equatorial Guinea didn't need the AI justification to reach the third line in the post colonial era--and the election that put that leader into power was democratic.ías_Nguema

I went looking and couldn't find it, but here's something newer and probably more useful:

Neuralink has described the bandwidth they're seeking as similar to the corpus callosum. I don't think that's actually necessary to achieve superhuman results. The brain is good at adding new sense organs (see research on vibrating belts, cameras attached to tongues, whiskers on finger etc). I presume that the brain is also good at linking to 'more brain'. So, a low bandwidth interface, possibly only a few peripheral nerves, to either a von neumann architecture like the one I described above (and that memory interface could potentially also be connected to other hardware that could push and pop bits), or a computer simulation of neurons like the one in the linked paper is probably something that would be useful.

If you're using an extremely loose definition of 'AI superintelligence', namely 'a natural intelligence, physically connected to a machine that achieves otherwise unattainable performance in some dimension of intelligence', such as say a large improvement in 'digit span', I believe that such a thing is possible today using extant technology.

In a more general sense, how much artificial augmentation of a 'natural general intelligence' is required before it qualifies as an AGI?

Load More