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bartimaeus comments on Bayesianism for Humans - Less Wrong

52 Post author: ChrisHallquist 29 October 2013 11:54PM

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Comment author: bartimaeus 29 October 2013 04:33:47PM 2 points [-]

The post What Bayesianism Taught Me is similar to this one; your post has some elements that that one doesn't have, and that one has a few that you don't have. Combining the two, you end up with quite a nice list.

Comment author: ChrisHallquist 29 October 2013 04:58:20PM 2 points [-]

I want to like that post, because the formatting is so much tidier than the formatting on my post, but I actually disagree with the first two points. I'm in favor of just rolling with the fact that "Bayesian evidence" isn't what we ordinarily mean by "evidence," as useful as the former is. Also, Eliezer's "I don't know" post misses the pragmatics of saying, "I don't know"; we say "I don't know" if we don't have any information the other person is going to care about (the other person usually won't care that there are 10-1000 apples in a tree outside).

Comment author: bartimaeus 29 October 2013 06:19:56PM 1 point [-]

That's true, those points ignore the pragmatics of a social situation in which you use the phrase "I don't know" or "There's no evidence for that". But if you put yourself in the shoes of the boss instead of the employee (in the example given in "I don't know"), where even if you have "no information" you still have to make a decision, then remembering that you probably DO know something that can at least give you an indication of what to do, is useful.

The points are also useful when the discussion is with a rationalist.

Comment author: Tyrrell_McAllister 29 October 2013 06:26:47PM *  1 point [-]

The problem isn't with "I don't know", but with "I don't know anything about that." I agree that "I don't know" is useful.