tristanhaze

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Two Cult Koans

Mill?! When are you from, John David Galt?!

Simulate and Defer To More Rational Selves

I just want to say that the title of this post is fantastic, and in a deep sort of mathy way, beautiful. It's probably usually not possible, but I love it when an appropriate title - especially a nice not-too-long one - manages to contain, by itself, so much intellectual interest. Even just seeing that title listed somewhere could plant an important seed in someone's mind.

A Dialogue On Doublethink

I just want to say that the title of this post is fantastic, and in a deep sort of mathy way, beautiful. It's probably usually not possible, but I love it when an appropriate title - especially a nice not-too-long one - manages to contain, by itself, so much intellectual interest. Even just seeing that title listed somewhere could plant an important seed in someone's mind.

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Fake Reductionism

I don't see any reason to think he's trying to convey that scientists in general, or good ones, or anything like that, believe in fake reductionism. Some people do, and it's more charitable to Keats to presume he was just alluding to them.

Fake Reductionism

I agree with Robin that that indeed seems the weak point. It is far from clear to me, and I suspect it is not the case, that Keats here is doing something along the lines of actually trying to convey that, oh, there's nothing special about rainbows, science has explained them, or whatever. Rather, he's invoking and playing with that sort of trope, for a sophisticated poetic purpose.

I think the main point or points of Eliezer's post here are sound, but even suggesting that that sort of thing could be pinned on Keats is a needless distraction. Obviously serious poetry isn't Eliezer's strong point, as I'm sure he'd be the first to agree. The introductory quote could still be used to good effect though.

Happiness and Children

I think you're probably right about this (not based on first-hand experience of having a child, mind - I haven't), but I can't quite see what it's doing here. Is this meant to be some sort of objection to the comment you're replying to? It isn't obviously in tension with it.

Rationality Quotes May 2014

Yep, what The Ancient Geek said. Sorry I didn't reply in a timely way - I'm not a regular user. I'm glad you basically agree, and pardon me for using such a recherche word (did I just do it again?) needlessly. Philosophical training can do that to you; you get a bit blind to how certain words are, while they could be part of the general intellectual culture, actually only used in very specific circles. (I think 'precisification' is another example of this. I used it with an intelligent nerd friend recently and, while of course he understood it - it's self explanatory - he thought it was terrible, and probably thought I just made it up.)

Hope you look at Wittgenstein!

Why don't you attend your local LessWrong meetup? / General meetup feedback

Filled in. This is a good idea. I would be interested in getting some feedback on the feedback, or seeing a writeup of some of the lessons or issues that come out of this.

Rationality Quotes May 2014

How specifically could being "definite" be a a problem for language? Take any specific thing, apply an arbitrary label, and you are done.

This remark seems to flow from an oversimplified view of how language works. In the context of, for example, a person or a chair, this paradigm seems pretty solid... at least, it gets you a lot. You can ostend the thing ('take' it, as it were) and then appy the label. But in the case of lots of "objects" there is nothing analogous to such 'taking' as a prior, discrete step from talking. For example, "objects" like happiness, or vagueness or definiteness themselves.

I think you may benefit from reading Wittgenstein, but maybe you'd just hate it. I think you need it though!

Rationality Quotes May 2014

For my part, I've found the economic notions of opportunity cost and marginal utility to be like this.

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