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RichardKennaway comments on The Martial Art of Rationality - Less Wrong

42 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 22 November 2006 08:00PM

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Comment author: RichardKennaway 30 May 2012 10:45:55AM 1 point [-]

Computer games, done properly, could be a good teacher of rationality. If you fail to observe the laws of nature that happen to apply in the game and act accordingly, you die / can't get to the goal.

The laws may carry their own message.

Space Invaders: However high you build your score, the alien horde (i.e. Death) crushes you in the end.

First Person Shooters: Killing your enemies is fun!

Tetris, Kingdom of Loathing, Evony, etc.: Clicky-clicky-clicky! Better than life!

Comment author: witzvo 01 June 2012 12:46:17AM *  0 points [-]

That's not quite what I had in mind, but, well, if we make our own game it can have it's own laws. For example, you gain power by understanding the rules of the game and acting accordingly, not just by reflexes or level grinding. If you understand the rules keenly, you act in subtly different ways that are vastly more effective, perhaps. Maybe you can collaborate to achieve more than you can individually, etc....

Here's a game that, at least, makes you figure out the game mechanics a bit to live: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=7288 Variations on this requiring more clever tool building, say, would be interesting. But I think it is possible to build a game around a turing machine if we are clever about it.