All of vlad.proex's Comments + Replies

All is fair in love and war, on Zero-sum games in life

I wrote an article on this subject (i.e. why do we play zero-sum games while praising positive-sum games?)

https://native-wonder.blogspot.com/2020/12/things-people-want.html

European Master's Programs in Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, and related fields

Thank you, this is very useful. Lately I've been interested in programs that are fully online and could be completed in a year. Would you have any recommendations for that?

3Master Programs ML/AI6moThe programs in continental Europe (e.g. Amsterdam, Darmstadt, Tübingen, ETH, and Lausanne) are usually 2 years long and the UK ones (Edinburgh, Oxford, Cambridge, and UCL) take one year. I don't know how well the UK ones adapted their program to online teaching, I have just heard that Edinburgh is currently struggling to do so.
All Lesswrong Posts by Yudkowsky in one .epub

Strongly upvoted. As a Kindle-dependent newcomer who's delving into the classics, this is precious.

I have read RAZ. Does this file include it? I would actually need only the posts that are not there.

Do you plan to do this for other authors?

9sone3d7moYudkowsky' Lesswrong Posts NOT INCLUDED in RAZ: Rationality From AI to Zombies >>DOWNLOAD .EPUB HERE [https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Sop-qQLkHZi5hZkItV8I8g5Qehq82Ggy/view?usp=sharing] add: Some of the lasts posts are missing. Were not included when I create this .epub
3sone3d7moThis file include ALL Yudkowsky’s posts from Lesswrong. This means it contains RAZ. I have a handcrafted .epub with all his posts that are not in RAZ. I will find it and post it here. Stay tuned. Yes, it’s posible to do the same with other authors.
Upside decay - why some people never get lucky

I had trouble understanding how the different facts and judgments in your post are connected between each other and with the concept of upside decay.

But I want to say that I really appreciate the concept, because something very similar occurred to me once, though at the time I didn't give it a name. I was studying the careers of creative artists, and there is a lot of discrimination in these fields. Against women, against people who start out in less prestigious institutions, and so on.

My idea was that because many people were excluded and diversity... (read more)

Numeracy neglect - A personal postmortem

Thank you for your questions, they're proving very useful.

But it is interesting to understand, what's happening to other children, who actually do math. Suddenly you realize, that "solving problems" for them is less energy demanding, which is awkward!

I'm not sure this is the case. We're humans, maths is hard for everyone. I imagine it's more about developing an ethics of work early on and being willing to delay gratification and experience unpleasant sensations for the purpose of learning something valuable. Though of co... (read more)

3Данило Глинський7moThis is false, there are a few genius mathematician who early in childhood proved it is easy for some humans. Exactly! There is even more specific concept in programming psychology, it is called "notional machines". Small little machines in your head which can interpret using rules. I think those also can transfer to math learning, as after rule-based machines concept is grasped, all the algorithmic, iterative, replacable and transitive concepts from math start making sense.
Forcing Freedom

Your position is consistent, though to me somewhat troubling.

I wouldn't equate "unable to have different preferences or to envision a better situation" with "happy". Perhaps Plato's cave applies here. Or consider a child who is born in an underground prison, Banelike, and never sees the light of sun. Who is then offered the opportunity of freedom on the surface and refuses out of fear or ignorance. Would you think they are "happy"? Perhaps, but they could be happier. Or at least they could experience a richer level ... (read more)

2Liam Goddard7moYou raise some excellent points, and I agree for the most part; preferences don't necessarily correspond to happiness. But one thing I still stand behind, although it might not exactly follow the original thought experiment: If a person is fully educated and entirely understands the situation, including what their original utility function was, and all of the possible alternatives, and they still choose to be be enslaved, they shouldn't be forced into freedom.
Forcing Freedom

I agree with you, though I don't think the linked account expects an "eternal old age"; what made you think that? As I see it, it's actually an argument about the inner experience of humans and how the author thinks we wouldn't be happy with a very long lifespan. I don't agree with the author, but I linked the post as anecdotal evidence that some people who are no longer young may reject the idea of a very long lifespan because of a general feeling of life-weariness (to what extent this feeling is connected to the biological p... (read more)

2AnthonyC7moYou're right, nothing explicitly stated anything about old age, but the study itself has "burials" right up in the headline. IDK if respondents knew those questions were coming when they answered the "lifespan" question, but if they did, I doubt most people automatically assume an increased lifespan meant they'd start being younger than they currently were. That's all conjecture on my part, but I think it's similarly plausible as psychological life-weariness as an explanation. As I understand it, the theoretical limits on energy efficiency of irreversible computing are a function of ambient temperature (because they involve dumping heat/entropy into the environment). That means if the future universe keeps getting colder as it expands, the amount of computing you can do with a fixed supply of stored energy goes up without bound, as long as you use it slowly enough. That's basically Dyson's Eternal Intelligence, though I don't think anyone knows what the computing architecture would look like. Things like the Omega Point spacetime in a collapsing universe seem more speculative to me but still might be possible.
Forcing Freedom

Personally, I am strongly inclined towards non-interference. I have little trouble accepting that people choose wrong, knowing how fallible I am myself. I also think that, given how complex the universe is for us, it will always be easier to find arguments for inaction than for action.

And this is precisely why I am interested in arguments for interference. Most of the time, the option of non-interference is the easiest for me; which makes me at least a bit suspicious. It makes me wonder: have I carefully considered all the opposing arguments?

'Morali... (read more)

4Stuart Anderson7moI may not try to save them, in exactly the same way I may not eat the whole tub of ice-cream. Just because you have a biological imperative to act doesn't mean it's necessarily a good idea. If you jump in front of a train, then you're jumping in front of a train, with all the risk that carries. Are you, personally, rewarded enough to justify that? In the context of aggregated personal choices, is society rewarded enough by you jumping in front of the train to justify you doing it (and conversely, what does society get when you don't jump in front of said train)? Learning to say "Not my problem" or "Not the way you're demanding" when your lizard brain is screaming otherwise is something every person needs to master. Further to that is learning to sit with uncomfortable emotions that being a rational actor creates in those circumstances. You cannot run your life off the back of what feels good or bad alone, and that starts by recognising that feelings aren't facts and that you need not act on them. As I said, the aggregated individual choice problem is unsolvable for me. As long as we allow choice we allow the possibility of too many poor choices stacking up and creating a poor outcome (in your example, slavery). Sometimes removing agency is the answer to a problem (often, IME. Generally as a product of decision making as a leader). If you want a model for intervention when you/society don't want to intervene but know it is morally correct, I'd suggest that of the patriarch. The archetypal role of the male authority that will make the hard choices for himself and those under his protection. The person that is willing to say no to poor choices and back it up with force. Many of your examples feature giving agency to people that are clearly not qualified to exercise it, and in the context of the patriarch that means that the patriarch takes responsibility for them. The patriarch will do the right thing for the greater good of all, especially those in his care, despi
Can we hold intellectuals to similar public standards as athletes?
Maybe some kind of social app inspired by liquid democracy/quadratic voting might work?

Do you think it's wise to entrust the collective with judging the worth of intellectuals? I can think of a lot of reasons this could go wrong: cognitive biases, emotional reasoning, ignorance, Dunning–Kruger effect, politically-driven decisions... Just look at what's happening now with cancel culture.

In general this connects to the problem of expertise. If even intellectuals have trouble understanding who among them is worthy of trust and respect, how c... (read more)

Do you think it's wise to entrust the collective with judging the worth of intellectuals?

The idea as described doesn't necessitate that.

  • Everyone rates everyose else. This creates a web of trust.
  • An individual user then designates a few sources they trust. The system uses those seeds to propagate trust through the network, by a transitivity assumption.
  • So every individual gets custom trust ratings of everyone else, based on who they personally trust to evaluate trustworthiness.

This doesn't directly solve the base-level problem of evaluating intellectuals, but... (read more)

Forcing Freedom

TIL 'former' and 'latter' are used to distinguish between two things. Corrected.

Forcing Freedom

The survey is quite simplistic. 19% said "I want to live forever", while 42% said "I want to live longer than a normal lifespan, but not forever". The problem is in the ambiguity. What does 'forever' mean? A million years? Until the heat death of the universe?

And what is 'longer than a normal lifespan'? Ten years longer? A million years longer?

My guess is that most people who chose the second option want to live until they're 100 or something, and that is in fact "longer than the average lifespan" wh... (read more)

5AnthonyC7moThat linked account seems to assume that people who want to live forever expect to "get old" along the way, in the same way they do now, and I don't think that's accurate. I wouldn't want to live even for centuries, let alone forever, in a 90 year old's body, in world where most of the people I know and love are gone forever. But many of those same 90 year olds will gladly profess to believe, or at least hope, to be reunited with loved ones in death and remain with them forever. But if you offer me the chance to stay in a 25 or 30 year old's body/level of health, and everyone else I love would get the same, I'd at least like the chance to see what it's like and (Ian Banks' Culture-style) get to choose my lifespan, not all at once but each and every day, based on how well it works out. I have no idea if I would actually want to live for TREE(3) years, but I'd much rather have the choice, and not have to make it within the next 50 years. Are you sure? That seems like a question of physics, and the accessible energy reserves and computational capacity of our light cone (the latter of which may be infinite even if the former is not). Any survey of this type runs into, not just the nuances of the questions and how they're asked, but how little most people have really thought about the question, or what the different answers would actually imply.
Numeracy neglect - A personal postmortem

The general trend has been to make computers user-friendly, and to hide the complexity from the user. On one hand, this has been helpful for their diffusion, and I'm sure it benefited a lot of people in a lot of ways (besides making a lot of money). If I think of my parents, for instance, I can't believe they would have ever started to use computers had they been more complicated.

On the other hand, this might be the fundamental obstacle in the way of coding literacy. To do stuff in the modern world, you actually have to know how to read and writ... (read more)

Numeracy neglect - A personal postmortem

To stay on computer science analogies, this reminds me of the principle of abstraction. When you call an API, it sort of feels like magic. A task gets done, and you trust that it was done correctly, and that saves you the time of controlling the code and rewriting it from scratch. "We have only to think out how this is to be done once, and forget then how it is done." (A. Turing, 1947). 

Numeracy neglect - A personal postmortem

Thank you for the welcome and the feedback! Yes, I am set on deepening my engagement with Reality and tackling more practical tasks. I also want to work on keeping score on my judgments and getting better at detecting & analysing my mistakes. I will definitely write more about it when the moment comes.