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Comment author: komponisto 27 April 2015 07:52:04PM *  0 points [-]

What I was originally addressing, however, was komponisto's assertion that "high IQ" is merely "high processing speed and copious amounts of RAM", which I denied, pointing out that "high processing speed and copious amounts of RAM" alone would surely not have been enough to invent calculus,

This shows that you didn't understand what I was arguing, because you are in fact agreeing with me.

The structure of my argument was:

(1) People say that high IQ is the reason Newton invented calculus.

(2) However, high IQ is just high processing speed and copious amounts of RAM.

(3) High processing speed and copious amounts of RAM don't themselves suffice to invent calculus.

(4) Therefore, "high IQ" is not a good explanation of why Newton invented calculus.

Comment author: Quill_McGee 27 April 2015 06:44:03PM *  0 points [-]

"[[ My favorite "other" referral was someone who checked the URL on tinychat entirely be coincidence, before it was passworded. ]]"

Yep, that was surprisingly successful. I also had success with that tactic on fimfiction.net, though that produced fewer useful results.

(also, unless there's another 15-year-old, I look to be the youngest.)

Comment author: Error 27 April 2015 02:01:28PM 0 points [-]

Oops. I suppose that demonstrates that I know neither German nor Dutch. I will fix it.

Comment author: Unknowns 27 April 2015 06:50:28AM *  0 points [-]

One obvious reason for being able to choose to determine various parts of the map is that it contributed to survival. For example, the leader of the tribe hates you and makes a few insulting remarks. You can choose to interpret these in a fairly neutral way, or you can interpret them as they are. If you choose to interpret them as hateful and insulting, as they are, you may have a hard time not responding in a corresponding manner, and so you may end up dead. You will be better off if you can choose to interpret them in the neutral way. Or again, the leader of the tribe proclaims an obviously false religious dogma. If you can choose to accept it, things will go on as usual. If you cannot accept it, you may have a hard time pretending well enough to avoid getting killed as a heretic. Again you will be better off if you are in control of your map.

Also, I disagree that there is any rigid distinction between beliefs we can control and others we cannot (as I suggested in my post on belief in belief). We cannot generally change the visual sensation when we look at the sky. But whether or not we believe the statement, "the sky is blue," is indeed up to us, and some people will e.g. deny that the sky is blue, since it is not really colored in the same way as other things. Or someone could indeed believe that the sky is fundamentally green, if that were e.g. a religious dogma.

Comment author: blossom 27 April 2015 06:50:13AM 0 points [-]

(you can buy them here if you know how to read German and live somewhere they'll deliver)

I believe you mean dutch.

Comment author: blossom 27 April 2015 06:19:41AM 1 point [-]

I want to accuse you of drawing causal arrows from consciousness to other modules of human mind design, which as far as I know is ruled out, evolutionarily speaking.

Why would that be? Did evolution stop once man became conscious? Even if all the modules were there before consciousness arose that does not mean that evolution could not have given consciousness some sort of causal effects on some mind modules.

In fact, if consciousness did not have effects on our mind modules, what would it have an effect on?

Comment author: EphemeralNight 27 April 2015 02:19:11AM *  -1 points [-]

There is a wrong-note in the reasoning of this post that immediately started niggling at me, but it's subtle and I'm having trouble teasing out the underlying assumption. I want to say that you're taking "The purpose of consciousness is consciousness" as a given, when that is arguably false. Likewise, I want to accuse you of drawing causal arrows from consciousness to other modules of human mind design, which as far as I know is ruled out, evolutionarily speaking.

I offer this:

The "executive process" as you call it is part of the world-modeler. It is the world-modeling module that evolved in response to a very unique world-modeling challenge. There is a critical difference between sky-color and insult-vs-complement that you seem to be glossing over. A given wavelength of light always has the same properties. A given array of posture, facial expression, tone, etc. does not always map directly to the same social reality.

We can't chose to see a smile on a scowling face any more than we can chose to see a green sky, but unlike the sky, the same facial expression can mean vastly different things depending on context, because the causes underlying any given expression depends on a thing that is just as complicated as you are.

The "executive process" is how evolution solved the entirely new problem of adding other world-modelers to the world-model and that's what it does. If it is glitchy and unreliable, well, it is still very new. The very first functional wing to evolve probably wasn't all that good at producing lift, either.

Comment author: V_V 26 April 2015 11:13:30PM 0 points [-]

As we've seen, such a sublanguage (perhaps called `Ask', a part of Haskell which definitely excludes Hell) cannot contain all the angels, but it certainly admits plenty of useful ones who can always answer mundane things you might Ask. It's ironic, but not disastrous that lucifer, the evaluation function by which Ask's angels bring their light, is himself an angel, but one who must be cast into Hell.


Comment author: Benito 26 April 2015 07:42:48PM 0 points [-]

Perhaps I will join. I'll have to see if it works with ipad.

Comment author: Lachouette 26 April 2015 01:07:19PM 1 point [-]

As tkadlubo says, most people choose to visit as guests. Otherwise you are free to create an account on tinychat.com and visit the chat after logging in, which is what I do. It allows you to PM people and potentially become a moderator, neither of which are necessary for just participating in the pomodoros.

Comment author: FourFire 26 April 2015 11:05:28AM 1 point [-]

Please do.

Comment author: Sable 26 April 2015 01:35:50AM 2 points [-]

I was reading your comment, and when I thought about always betting a dollar, my brain went, "That's a good idea!"

So I asked my brain, "What memory are you accessing that makes you think that's a good idea?"

And my brain replied, "Remember that CFAR reading list you're going through? Yeah, that one."

So I went to my bookshelf, got out Dan Ariely's Predictably Irrational, and started paging through it.

Professor Ariely had several insights that helped me understand why actually using money seemed like such a good idea:

  1. Interacting within market norms makes you do a cost-benefit analysis. Professor Ariely discusses the difference between social norms and market norms in chapter 4. Social norms govern interactions that don't involve money (favors for a friend), and market norms govern interactions that do (costs and benefits). The professor did an experiment in which he had people drag circles into a square on a computer screen (judging their productivity by how many times they did this in a set period of time). He gave one group of such participants an explicitly stated "50-cent snickers bar" and the other a "five-dollar box of Godiva chocolates." As it turns out, the results were identical to a previous experiment in which the same amounts of direct cash were used. Professor Ariely concludes, "These results show that for market norms to emerge, it is sufficient to mention money." In other words, Professor Ariely's research supports your first (4.) - "A dollar feels more important than it actually is..." This is the case because as soon as money enters the picture, so do market norms.

  2. Money makes us honest. In chapter 14, aptly titled "Why Dealing With Cash Makes Us More Honest," Professor Ariely explains an experiment he conducted in the MIT cafeteria. Students were given a sheet of 20 math problems to solve in five minutes. The control group was to have their solutions checked, and then were given 50 cents per correct answer. A second group was instructed to tear their paper apart, and then tell the experimenter how many questions they got correct (allowing them to cheat). They were then paid 50 cents for every correct answer they claimed. Lastly, a third group was allowed to cheat similarly to the second group, except that when they gave one experimenter their score, they were given tokens, which were traded in immediately thereafter for cash through a second experimenter. The results: A) The control group solved an average of 3.5 questions correctly. B) The second group, who cheated for cash, claimed an average of 6.2 correct solutions. C) The third group, who cheated for tokens, claimed an average of 9.4 correct solutions. Simply put, when actual, physical money was removed from the subjects' thought process by a token and a few seconds, the amount of cheating more than doubled, from 2.7 to 5.9.

In short, using money to back a prediction a) forces us to think analytically, and b) keeps us honest.

Thank you for the idea. Now I just need to find an ATM to get some ones...

Comment author: Anders_H 25 April 2015 11:49:09PM 1 point [-]

Thank you for organizing this. Oslo is my hometown, and I will definitely be there if it coincides with a trip home. I'll find you on freenode later and send you some information about possible attendees from a previous attempt at organizing an Oslo meetup

Comment author: RichardKennaway 25 April 2015 10:56:18PM 5 points [-]

I'm not sure why this comment is being downvoted


This is bad and you should feel bad.

Comment author: TheOtherDave 25 April 2015 07:30:55PM 0 points [-]

I suspect that humans have evolved a better sense of the likelihood of being caught, many times. The thing is, one of the things such a sense is useful for is improving our ability to cheat with impunity. Which creates more selection pressure to get better at catching cheaters, which reduces our ability to reliably estimate the likelihood of being caught.

Comment author: Anders_H 25 April 2015 06:21:19PM 4 points [-]

I'm not sure why this comment is being downvoted - perhaps because of the tone - but the content in it is true

The definition of parallel lines is essentially "lines that don't intersect". We therefore do not need an axiom to show that if two lines are parallel, the do not intersect - this just follows from the definition.

The fifth postulate says that for every line L and point P outside of L, the parallel line L' through P is unique (Existence of L' follows from axioms 1 through 4)

Comment author: SirTyrion 25 April 2015 04:54:09PM 0 points [-]

I’m sorry fo the delay but I came across these articles accidentally through google and long after its date of publication. Not even knew this website until recently.

I guess you're not interested in perform more analisys about mate choice, since you're mathematician and I guess you were focused mainly on just developing statistical analysis of data.

Anyway speaking as someone with an education in evolutionary biology, I feel that it was needed a synthesis of descriptions of human mating systems. Quantifying the shape and strength of mating preferences is a vital component of the study of sexual selection and reproductive options, but the influence of experimental design on these estimates is unclear sometimes in most studies I've been reading.

Comment author: Anatoly_Vorobey 25 April 2015 03:57:18PM 1 point [-]

The fifth axiom is the only one which requires some effort to understand. Intuitively, it states that parallel lines do not intersect.

No. This is bad and you should feel bad. Parallel lines do not intersect, and the fifth postulate has nothing to do with it. What do you imagine the definition of "parallel lines" is?

Parallel lines do not intersect by definition, in any geometry, Euclidean or non-Euclidean. The parallels postulate talks about something completely different.

In response to Ethical Inhibitions
Comment author: ImmortalRationalist 25 April 2015 06:52:54AM 0 points [-]

Humans underestimating the chance of being caught seems to beg the question of why they underestimate the chance of being caught in the first place. Why have humans evolved ethical inhibition, as opposed to a better sense of the likelihood of being caught? Still, evolution isn't perfect.

Comment author: davecotter 25 April 2015 05:37:07AM 2 points [-]

My name is Dave, this is my first post.

I consider myself an aspiring newbie epistemic rationalist, having been turned on to it by HPMOR, i've been studying it for a couple months now and feel I have already greatly benefited from learning even the most basic concepts. I have read "Judge on a Boat" and found it quite as satisfying as HPMOR, and would highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for another highly engaging, thought-provoking, rational fiction.

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