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January 2016 Media Thread

Visual Information Theory. I was already comfortable with information theory and this was still informative. This blogger's other posts are similarly high-quality.

January 2016 Media Thread

Ghost - Meliora

Clean production, catchy melodies, interesting lyrics, and so on. It doesn't get old either. My favorite songs are Cirice and He Is. I would have confused the latter for a catchy Christian metal song if not for the lyrics. I mean, I guess it still is Christian metal, just not the usual way around.

January 2016 Media Thread

In the end, it is just another Abrams movie: slick, SFX-heavy, and as substantial & satisfying as movie theater popcorn.

Yep.

You might want to add a spoiler note at the top, though.

July 2015 Media Thread

God is an Astronaut put out a new album recently called Helios | Erebus. Some songs hit harder than All is Violent, but it's otherwise similar. I highly recommend.

Agency is bugs and uncertainty

It might be wishful thinking, but I feel like my smash experience improved my meatspace-agency as well.

Agency is bugs and uncertainty

Story time! Shortly after Brawl came out, I got pretty good at it. I could beat all my friends without much effort, so I decided to enter in a local tournament. In my first round I went up against the best player in my state, and I managed to hit him once, lightly, over the course of two games. I later became pretty good friends and practiced with him regularly.

At some point I completely eclipsed my non-competitive friends, to the extent that playing with them felt like a chore. All I had to do was put them in certain situations where I knew how they would react and then punish. It became a simple algorithm. Get behind them in shield, wait for the roll, punish. Put them in the air, jump after them, wait for the airdodge, punish. Throw them off the ledge, wait for the jump, punish. It felt like I was playing a CPU.

Meanwhile, I still couldn't reliably beat the best player from my state. One day, after he took off a particularly gruesome stock, I paused and, exasperated, asked for advice. We watched a replay and he showed me how I responded to certain situations in the same way every time, leading to a punish. My habits were less obvious than those of my friends, but they were still habits. He said, "you play like a robot, in a bad way."

So yeah. In that context, I've downgraded friends to CPUs because of their predictability, and been downgraded to a CPU by omega, because of my predictability.

On immortality

An exact copy of me may be "me" from an identity perspective, but it is a separate entity from a utilitarian perspective. The death of one is still a tragedy, even if the other survives.

You should know this intuitively. If a rogue trolley is careening toward an unsuspecting birthday cake, you'll snatch it out of the way. You won't just say, "eh, in another time that cake will survive," and then watch it squish. Unless you're some sort of monster.

Rationality: From AI to Zombies

I am impressed. The production quality on this is excellent, and the new introduction by Rob Bensinger is approachable for new readers. I will definitely be recommending this over the version on this site.

Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality discussion thread, March 2015, chapter 120

I didn't want to tell it to you before because I thought it might prejudice your decision unfairly.

If Draco has has the last half-hour of his memory sealed off, then why does Harry say these words to him? Shouldn't Draco respond, "What decision?"

Unless it's a more nuanced memory charm, such that he only subconsciously remembers the conversation.

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