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College discussion thread

A similar offer for anyone admitted/visiting Yale!

What rationality material should I teach in my game theory course

I am an economics major at Yale and would be very skeptical of a game theory course that deviated too far from the theory of winning at multi-party interactions (game theory) and dealt extensively with the theory of winning in general (rationality). Such a class would almost certainly seem too preachy or too close to the genre of self-help. You, as a professor of the field, would obviously know better than me what areas of rationality or general strategy are traditionally included in the field of game theory -- but I would be very surprised if most of the above links, the bulk of which deal with the optimization of one's time, one's goals, or one's beliefs, would fit well into most Game Theory courses.

This is not to say that I necessarily oppose the practice of using a course title to mislead students about its contents -- rather, I am afraid that exhortations of rationality will fall flat on students who came to learn about Nash Equilibria and think you're trying to tell them how to best live their lives using methods and models beyond the scope of the course.

Open thread for December 9 - 16, 2013

For about a month and a half, though I forget about 25% of the time. I haven't noticed any strong effects, though I feel as if I approach the day-to-day more conscientiously and often get more out of my time.

Open thread for December 9 - 16, 2013

I decided I'd share the list of questions I try to ask myself every morning and evening. I usually spend about thirty seconds on each question, just thinking about them, though I sometimes write my answers down if I have a particularly good insight. I find they keep me pretty well-calibrated to my best self. Some are idiosyncratic, but hopefully these will be generally applicable.

A. Today, this week, this month:

  1. What am I excited about?
  2. What goals do I have?
  3. What questions do I want to answer?
  4. What specific ways do I want to be better?

B. Yesterday, last week, last month:

  1. What did I accomplish that am I proud of?
  2. In what instances did I behave in a way I am proud of?
  3. What did I do wrong? How will I do better?
  4. What do I want to remember? What adventures did I have?

C. Generally: 9: If I'm not doing exactly what I want to be doing, why?

December Monthly Bragging Thread

Composed my first substantially original melody, a setting of a medieval Hebrew poem. I'm proud because I've usefully applied principles of music theory I learned last spring.

Existential Risk II

As someone who lurks a lot around LW but hasn't thought very seriously about x-risk, I found this post very useful. It helped clarify a few terms I often see around the site (e.g. Great Filter) and synthesized a lot of common attitudes that I've noticed. Thanks!

Advice for a smart 8-year-old bored with school

I on the other hand, got a very good experience out of the CTY distance writing program. It forced me to clarify my thoughts and be conscientious about how I wrote for the first time. Also, as an 11-year-old who had gone through life with few to no challenges, it was an excellent opportunity to really have to work hard at something.

Estimation as a game

This is a game I play often when it comes to estimating time - probably the most frequent estimation that I conduct in day-to-day life. When on a New York City subway, for instance, I'll make a 50% confidence range guess on how long it will take the subway to get to my stop. The game works equally well when waiting for a light to change, a lecture to end, an elevator to arrive, etc.

I started doing this at a fairly young age when - in response to asking "are we there yet," - my parents told me to guess how long it would take to reach a travel destination.

Open thread, August 19-25, 2013

I enjoyed this non-technical piece about the life of Kolmogorov - responsible for a commonly used measure of complexity, as well as several now-conventional conceptions of probability. I wanted to share:

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