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Help with understanding some non-standard-LW philosophy viewpoints

But also note that while the past may be fixed, your knowledge of the past is probabilistic. I assume there is evidence you could encounter that would convince you that Putin ordering airstrikes in Syria didn't actually happen.

making notes - an instrumental rationality process.

I take notes on my phone. I think some big tradeoffs compared to a paper notebook are less ease of writing, more convenience, less physical space taken up, and an end result that is easier to back up and work with in many ways.

Crazy Ideas Thread

Is human mind space countably finite? Just bring us all back please, I'll be in there somewhere.

Why "Changing the World" is a Horrible Phrase

I don't think there's a precise threshold, but when I use the phrase "change the world", I'm pretty confident that my interlocutor is thinking of people like Steve Jobs and companies like Apple and not thinking of people like me who don't have our own wikipedia articles and companies like the ones I work for that don't have names many would recognize and aren't credited with inventing/popularizing important product categories that millions of people now use every day.

People who "change the world" make big political, technological, or scientific changes and bring them into the lives of many people.

Irrationalism on Campus?

I am a recent graduate of the University of Toronto, where we've seen that talks on campus that are viewed as opposing or questioning feminism will have their advertisements torn down and mobs organized by the student union will show up to harass and physically block attendees and take other disruptive actions like pulling fire alarms. I expect this would generalize to suppression of other forms of un-PC speech and thinking.

That said, the administration at UofT seems to respond to these incidents more reasonably than the UCLA administration in the article (i.e. they didn't thoughtlessly capitulate), and my experience from taking courses across science, social science, and humanities faculties is that the atmosphere in general is definitely not extreme to the level of fire alarm pulling. I would guess that the extreme elements are mostly local to a small number of particular academic subject areas like women's studies, but that this minority has significant power to influence what is acceptable speech and thought.

Stupid Questions (10/27/2014)

I used to be creeped out by house centipedes, but I decided to get along with them after reading that they are generally harmless to humans and useful to have around because they kill all sorts of other household pests.

I think just remembering that they are a good thing and thinking of them as being on my team was helpful. I also gave cool names to the ones living in my basement (e.g. Zeus, Odin, Xerxes) and talked to them e.g. "Hi, centipedes. Keep up the good work, but please do try to stay away from me during the day, and remember our deal: you can live here, but my species has an ingrained fear of you guys, so if you drop down onto me from the ceiling or something I'm probably going to instinctively smash you."

Happiness Logging: One Year In

My worry in that case would be present conditions bleeding into the memory and evaluation of those earlier pings. For example, I'd expect that when you're hungry your relative ranking of past ping moments is going to change to more heavily weigh moments when you were eating.

Stupid Questions (10/27/2014)

Your school might have useful resources. If there is a career center, go there and see what kind of resources and help are available. There could be a student internship program, student job boards, career fairs, etc. Professors sometimes have work opportunities as well (they might announce these, or you may have to ask).

Stupid Questions (10/27/2014)

I've read that the CEO of Levi's recommends washing jeans very infrequently.

Won't they smell? I have a pretty clean white-collar lifestyle, but I'm concerned about wearing mine even once or twice between machine washing. Is it considered socially acceptable to re-wear jeans?

2014 Less Wrong Census/Survey

Did the survey. Thank you once again, Yvain.

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