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I'd like to propose a way for measuring a system's freedom: it is the size of the set of closed-ended goals which it can satisfy from its current state. How's that?

I also think that this is all you really need to not be confused about free will. It's the freedom to do what you will.


"So according to you, the laws of the universe are random. I think this hardly plausible."

I don't see why it is not plausible. It's not like the Universe has any reason to choose the laws that it did and not others. Why have a procedure, algorithmic or not, if there are no goals?


"Aesthetics is pretty reliable among humans, but what about in minds-in-general"

I don't think that's relevant. A fugue's job description doesn't include entertaining killer robots from outer space, it's supposed to entertain humans.

In general, I think any artwork should be judged (not enjoyed, but judged) based on whether the author succeeded or failed at what [s]he, personally set out to do, and whether it was a hard thing to do - whether it is creating music that is different from all other music in every way imaginable while remaining musical, or writing a novel that avoids all unrealism, or just figuring out what makes museums accept works for which "garbage" is a description, not an insult. Basically, the same way you'd judge an engineer.


My initial guess was "keep learning, there's always more to learn."


There's also the possibility that you're being inconvenient to them. Say, vegetarians can't go to a true meat lover's party, people who get up early might need ME to get up eartly for whatever reason, and if your business fails and I live with you, that's obviously my problem.


"Let's get a bigger house, further away from work, so it has an extra bedroom in case Grandma comes over"

Not saying this is a bad example, but it COULD be the case that grandma never being able to come over is totally unacceptable. Which is also a pitfall - something can seem trivial until it goes away.


So, having thought about it today, I realized that I did overreact. Some of the justifications offered made sense. But I still find McGonnagal's reactions odd. Yes, a kid genius has special needs. But that doesn't mean he should be able to treat others like imbecils. It might've been just shock, but at some point it should have occured to her: I'm letting a prepubescent kid run circles around me. Even if he keeps being right, he's gonna get himself in trouble running his mouth all the time.

I know that she's supposed to be special, that most adults Harry knows DO put him in his place, but I see no reason to think that she is THAT special. She is not used to dealing with such situations (she can't even describe the one she had), and of all the teachers in the books, she's probably the one who values discipline the most.

Also, she never said: "Can you repeat what you just said? And this time, in English?" Sometimes, the situation seemed to call for a Point of View Gun from the Hitchhiker's Guide.

And there is REALLY no excuse for the temper tantrum.

And that's what a Black Hole Sue is: people act strange around her, so she might be happy.


I honestly have no idea how that has anything to do with what I'm saying.

And I read all the books, and watched the first six movies. I know what the prohesy is.


The infodumps are not what I'm talking about. I wouldn't believe it's Eliezer's writing if people weren't smugly going on about eigenvectors. My concern is that Harry is a complete asshole. And the unrealistic adults.

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