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The sad state of Rationality Zürich - Effective Altruism Zürich included

Thank you for the offer Elo, atm I am trying to catch & hold the hot potato (Shoutout to Duncan for posting the community space principles!), but I will contact you for additional advice regarding mediating as my toolbox can use a few hammers more ^

The sad state of Rationality Zürich - Effective Altruism Zürich included

Dear Roland,

thank you for sharing.

Full disclaimer: My name is Florian and I'm a somewhat regular attendee of the Zurich meetups and know everyone involved. I just met Roland in person as I decided he needed it most at this moment. I want to talk to everyone else involved – full confidentiality ensured by the gods of signaling – and then decide if this event was a feature or a bug of the community in question and take things from there, based on that decision. Of course, again, with the full consent of everyone involved.

(I am sure there is some kind of bug involved as I heard about this issue here as opposed to elsewhere more locally, but it may as well lie with me as with anybody else.)

If I get enough upvotes (hint, hint!) , I may be able to share my progress in a separate post within four weeks.

(edit one: clarified to say I just met Roland in person as opposed to I just got to know him )

The Superstar Effect

Thank you for your article, I really liked the optimism I felt conveyed from the paragraph about beating the superstar.

(I have my own caveat here, it does not pertain to the level of the easiness of the necessary plans or their implementation - in my experience it's much more the coordination problems that throw a wrench into these schemes: You are going to invariably need more people on the set; and you're going to end up spending factorially more time on explaining what exactly on earth you want to do) I notice though that most superstars didn't optimise their abilities, when treated separately, their ideas are barely trivial, and the stuff that is heard a decade, hundred years later probably was not made by a superstar of that time. (Know Giacinto Scelsi? He invented the stuff that people today use in music that the superstars of tomorrow will make. ~10% confident about that, considering x-risk and everything)

On another note, do I read you well enough to say that you wish to optimise on the teaching side? What if you could get more mileage out of optimising on the learning side, for instance propagating the urge of really wanting to learn stuff?

I'd also be interested how you'd set your plan in motion. Given infinite resources, what particular thing you know about would you change first. (Describe it to my system 1, pretty please)

Understanding Who You Really Are

I am so sorry for this comment: but Patañjali does immediately spring to my mind. I think he had prettily answered the question with: "not much; nothing special". I wonder why it kept being found useful after being answered that clearly. (I still sometimes catch myself using it when dating; its usefulness there does not increase though) Maybe it's perceived worth lies beyond its meaning and the hope of getting an answer there is connected to the hope of getting an answer for "What is the awesomest version of future me? Which traits, virtues and potentials (Hidden and known) did it focus on?" (oh wait I'm going to steal that question from myself and put it to real use)

November 2014 Monthly Bragging Thread

I have learnt to love myself. (For those cringing at the wording: Everything I ever will do will be informed by my total acceptance of all my faculties.)

Bayes Academy: Development report 1

That's awesome you are working on this!! I really would love to play it, with little regard to the outcome ( I pit it somewhere between quite interesting and totally super helpful) I wondered though whether you could make the player tally the probabilities himself and keep the scorings hidden yet allow taking notes ("hard mode"? and "hell" with no prior info on time limits? haha I can totally see being hit by the planning fallacy when trying to figure that one out for the first few times) I also imagine leaving the graphics away for now seems like the sane thing to do, even if you might want to think about it again after it is finished. Because of spreading the art.

Crossing the History-Lessons Threshold

But are there testable hypotheses in history? I just really want to know, because I have seen this argumentation pattern that I'd love to call 'instant historicising' whereas an argumenter says ' Oh this was a totally different situation and has so nothing to do with this other situation so we shouldn't even ever compare' whereas my mind goes bing - .

Crossing the History-Lessons Threshold

Yes i wanted to especially bring Ferguson up. But I wonder how he tests his hypotheses. (I haven't read anything yet, just had the luck to stumble upon his oeuvre on youtube - and that was that for my workplace concentration..)

On Caring

Thank You for this write-up; I really like the structure of it actually managing to present the evolution of an idea. Agreeing with more or less of the content, I often find myself posing the question whether I - and seven billion others - could save the world with my, our own hands. (I am beginning to see utilons even in my work as an artist, but that belongs into a wholly different post) This is a question for the ones like me, not earning much, and - without further and serious reclusion, reinvention and reorientation - not going to earn much, ever: Do I a) maximise and donate the small amounts I receive now, b) maximise my future income while minimising donations for now to spend on self-improvement and donate some highly uncertain, possibly huge sum in the future or c) use my resources to directly change something now? Let's not make it an overly complex discussion, so feel free to message me instead of commenting.

Concerning mother Theresa and other saints, I think we all know somebody who was an especially vociferous denier of her sanctity. I think it helps if I model myself as an instinctly selfish creature, and then go on and use my selfish instincts to push myself in a good direction. (I did this - on a small scale - with my smoking problem and told myself: Ok, so you wanna smoke, hm?? So go on and smoke - when you have won the next competition. So here's what I do whenever I feel the urge: Oh, I wanna smoke; Oh I can't, so how do I optimise my chance of smoking? Oh, I should go and work on my project) I think this technique - how darksided and dangerous it ever may be - can be used to propel myself towards even bigger goals.

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