Less Wrong is a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality. Please visit our About page for more information.

cidcilver comments on Your Strength as a Rationalist - Less Wrong

69 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 11 August 2007 12:21AM

You are viewing a comment permalink. View the original post to see all comments and the full post content.

Comments (113)

Sort By: Old

You are viewing a single comment's thread. Show more comments above.

Comment author: cidcilver 24 December 2015 09:10:22PM *  0 points [-]

I saw someone on FB reposting this post today.

Makes an interesting point about not doubting your own models in certain circumstances I guess, but the original post leaves out relevant issues of trust and pragmatism.

Sure people probably gullibly believe untrue stories more often than they should, but biases also often cause us to discount anecdotes that are actually representative of real, lived experiences (such as the subtle experiences of those who suffer from racism and sexism). - http://ntrsctn.com/science-tech/2015/12/tech-guys-allies/

Just because a bug is unusual or difficult to locally replicate/experience doesn't mean you should discount the bug reports.

Also (obviously) faith in even medical experts/institutions should be absolute.

Finally there's nothing wrong with offering someone good advice even if you think they may have lied to you/are trolling... there's still a chance they were not trolling, and arming them with good information might be good for them in the short term or long term.

Comment author: Jiro 25 December 2015 01:08:13AM 2 points [-]

That article is written as though "are you sure that was sexism" literally means "you had better prove it is sexism with 100% certainty, or I won't believe you".

That is not what it means. It's not a demand for 100% certainty, it's a demand for better evidence. You don't have to be treating the world like a computer in order to think that you should try to rule out innocent explanations before proclaiming someone guilty.

Also, while the author claims that the standard he quotes makes it impossible to prove sexism, his own standard has the opposite problem: according to it it's impossible to prove anyone innocent of sexism. People don't favor uncertainty over assumption because they're computer geeks; people favor uncertainty over assumption because there are such things as false positives, and they have enough of a cost that avoiding them is worthwhile.