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beowulflovesgrendel comments on Fake Explanations - Less Wrong

58 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 20 August 2007 09:13PM

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Comment author: beowulflovesgrendel 27 August 2007 03:32:11AM 0 points [-]

The larger experiment seems to me to be the teacher's looking for someone with an answer to the ENTIRE 'experiment' which includes a 'false' set up. This isn't about 'physics,' it's about overall discernment, much the same way a truly observant participant will 'see through a magic trick,' no mean feat. So, for me, "I don't know" is the only honest and complete answer. It denotes an empty glass which (at least) can be filled and restricts that answwer to a particular observer and does not make 'unknowable" a universal state. Answers which are "data dumps" lull the mind into not questing further. You cannot 'wake up' until you know you have been 'asleep.' AND THEN, there is power imbalance. In a really optimal teaching environment, any 'student' (regardless of age, sex etc.) could forthrightly ask of any 'teacher,' "Is this a set up?" How rare is that?